Posted on March 8, 2005

Non Muslims Need Not Apply [for Citizenship], Saudis Say

Saudi Institute, Mar. 7

Washington DC — The Saudi Government said today it won’t allow non Muslims to seek its citizenship, Al-Watan newspaper reported today.

Naser Al-Hanaya, Ministry of Interior Assistant for Civil Affairs, told Al-Watan that the citizenship law amended October 18 of last year won’t allow any non Muslims living in the country to seek Saudi nationality.

Al-Hanaya said “Islam is the religion and non Muslims won’t be allowed citizenship.”

The US has been involved in negotiation with the Saudi government for two years on admission to the World Trade Organization (WTO). The nationality law was amended as part of these negotiations.

The Saudi government bars all non Muslims including Christians, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists from practicing their faith publicly in Saudi Arabia. It also bars them from celebrating all national and cultural holidays such as Independence Day, Christmas and New Year’s Day.