Foreign wives of Saudi men can now apply for nationality


By Hussain Hazzazi

Okaz / Saudi Gazette

JEDDAH — The Civil Affairs and its branches all over the Kingdom have resumed receiving requests for nationality from foreign wives and widows of Saudi men after a lull of four years.

Applications will be reviewed by a six-member committee.

Applicants must score at least 17 points for their applications to be processed, informed sources said.

The points will be granted on certain aspects such as the place of birth, educational qualifications and the time of stay in the Kingdom.

Article 16 of the nationality system lays down the terms and conditions for granting nationality to foreign wives and widows of Saudi men.

The Civil Affairs also announced a new service to renew the national identity cards for Saudis living abroad for study, work or medical treatment.

However, Saudis staying abroad must fulfill a few conditions to renew their IDs from outside the Kingdom.

Saudis staying abroad must fill in the requested renewal application form, they must have their fingerprints and personal photographs in the Civil Affairs computer system and they must send a representative with a power of attorney to the Civil Affairs.

The Civil Affairs made it a condition on the beneficiary to come to its offices once he or she is back in the Kingdom.

A few days ago Minister of Justice and President of the Supreme Judicial Council Walid Al-Sama’ani directed all courts in the Kingdom to automatically guarantee divorced Saudi women custody of their children if there is no dispute with their former spouse.

Saudi mothers are now free to handle their child’s civil amenities and receive financial benefits without the need to file a case.