Saudi Arabia Considers More Measures Against Canada, Al-Jubeir Says

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"The university has strategically been focused on diversifying the worldwide portfolio to reduce risks associated with the global student recruitment strategy, now only about ten per cent of our worldwide student body is from Saudi Arabia", Vezina said.

Saudi Arabia is now coordinating for the transfer of all Saudi patients from Canadian hospitals to other facilities outside of the country, according to a report from the Saudi Press Agency. A Yemeni man was crucified in 2010 for raping and killing a girl and shooting dead her father.

It remains unclear how many Saudi patients will be affected by the decision.

Crimes such as attending anti-government rallies and homosexuality have contributed to crucifixion sentences in Saudi Arabia in the past.

An escalating diplomatic dispute between Canada and Saudi Arabia showed no signs of fizzling out Wednesday as the prime minister refused to offer an apology to end it.

The kingdom also told students studying in Canada that it was suspending scholarships to Canadian universities and colleges. TV pundits brought up Canada's suicide rate in what appeared as a broadside against the country's way of living.

Saudi media took a decidedly dark turn on Monday when it appeared to threaten Canada with a 9/11-style attack by tweeting a harshly worded infographic with an image of an airliner flying towards Toronto's skyline.

"Saudi Arabia does not interfere in the affairs of Canada in any way".

The ministry went on to threaten vague retaliation against Ottawa.

The sell-off began on Tuesday and underlines how the Saudi government is flexing its financial and political muscle to warn foreign powers against what it regards as interference in its sovereign affairs, the FT said.

The kingdom has suspended diplomatic ties as well as new investments with Canada after a Canadian call for the immediate release of an activist held in Riyadh.

He says there's nothing to mediate, and adds it's now up to Canada to fix its mistake.

The university is now in the process of trying to clarify with the Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau whether the suspension applies to only King Abdul Aziz Scholarship students or all Saudi students at the university.

Canada's arms trade to Saudi Arabia, which is led by what is widely viewed as a deeply repressive regime, has raised numerous complaints from human rights and arms-control groups.

But Canada has remained firm.

Samar Badawi was arrested along with fellow campaigner Nassima al-Sadah last week, the latest targets of what Human Rights Watch called an "unprecedented government crackdown" on women activists.

"We have always said that the politicisation of human rights matters is unacceptable", Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for Russia's foreign ministry, told reporters on Wednesday.

Riyadh has also frozen student exchange programs and ordered about 15,000 Saudi students in Canadian schools and colleges to leave the country.