A Protocol to the 2006 Cooperation Agreement between Saudi Arabia and CERN was signed on 9th May, that could eventually lead to the construction of a high-energy particle physics community in Saudi Arabia and ultimately, participation in the global scientific team collaborating at CERN.

The objective of the Protocol is to provide the operational framework as required for the execution of a range of specific tasks under the Cooperation Agreement in order to build a growing high-energy particle physics community in Saudi Arabia that eventually will participate as a visible member in the global scientific community collaborating at CERN.

The protocol was signed by H.E. Dr. Mohammed I. Al-Suwaiyel, President of the King Abdulaziz City of Science and Technology, on behalf of the Government of Saudi Arabia, and Robert Aymar, Director General of CERN , in the presence of a number of key figures and a delegation of representatives of Saudi universities and Saudi Aramco.

“The Saudi Government has started a number of initiatives to promote R&D for national development and to contribute to mankind science. This protocol is a step that will enable Saudi scientists to make such contributions,” said Dr Mohammed I. Al-Suwaiyel.

Dr Aymar agreed as he said, “This represents a significant step towards building a capacity for basic research in the Middle East. We have been pleased to welcome Saudi researchers into CERN’s global community, and I look forward to seeing the collaboration flourish over the coming years.”

CERN, the Geneva-headquartered European Organisation for Nuclear Research, has also signed Cooperation Agreements also with other countries in North Africa and the Middle East such as Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Morocco, Pakistan, and the United Arab Emirates. The signature of Saudi Arabia represents another step forward in the further development of basic science around the world and for CERN, as a European global laboratory.