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Saudi Arabia amends laws to grant citizenship to foreign nationals

Mon 20 Mar 2023    
| 3 min read

KSA: Saudi Arabia has passed a law allowing Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman to grant citizenship to selected people, following a proposal from the Minister of Interior this year.

In January, a royal decree was issued to approve the amendment of Article Eight of the Saudi Nationality Law, which authorises the Prime Minister to grant citizenship.

Also, read – Saudi Arabia lifts tourist visa curbs on all GCC residents

The decree became law on March 13, according to a post by the Makkah Al Mukarramah region’s official Twitter account, which quoted the Ministry of Interior.

“After reviewing Royal Decree No (M / 88) dated 6/11/1444 AH, Article Eight of the Saudi Nationality Law will be amended to ‘Saudi nationality may be granted by order of the Prime Minister based on a proposal from the Minister of Interior’.”

Under new rules, set to come into law after being published in the Kingdom’s Official Gazette, the Prime Minister will be able to grant citizenship to foreign nationals.

About Saudi Arabia Ministry of Interior

The founder of the Kingdom, the late King Abdulaziz has established peace, stability and security nationwide in accordance with Islamic Sharia laws. He has put an end to political unrest, tribal conflicts and statelessness caused by the absence of a powerful central government.

His sons followed suit have developed the country further, adding to its stability and security. They paved the way for tremendous cultural and technological achievements in all fields all over the Kingdom.

The Ministry of Interior (MOI) bears the responsibility to serve citizens and residents, achieving security, stability, and tranquillity. The history and formation of the MOI and its various sections passed through phases of administrative development and organization. Following is a historical development of the MOI.

Historic Development of the Ministry:

  • In 1344H a General Authority was formed to administer Al Hijaz Region. On 21/2/1345H the basic law of governance was issued and internal affairs were assigned to the Public Prosecution Department. The Department included Public Security, Telegraph and Posts, Public Health, Municipalities, Public Works, Commerce, Agriculture, Industry, Minerals and all private establishments.
  • Another Decree was issued on 19/8/1350 H. Thereby the General Prosecution was divided into two:
    • First Division: Ministry of Interior including Health, Education, Telegraph and Post, Legal Courts, General Police, Municipalities and Endowments (Article 17)
    • Second Division: Deputies Council consists of Chairman and Deputies from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Finance and Al-Shura.
      Responsibilities of those two divisions at that time were assigned to the Deputy General HRH Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz.
  • The Royal Decree number 18/4/10 was issued on 9/3/1353 H to merge the Ministry with the Deputies Council Bureau. Hence, the Ministry’s responsibilities were assigned to Council of Deputies.
  • On 1370 H, the Ministry of Interior was reformed according to the Royal Decree number 5/11/8697 dated 26/8/1370 H. The Ministry became responsible for Administration of the Regions, Emirates and Security Sectors in Al-Hijaz Region. In 1375 H, the Ministry was transferred from Al-Hijaz to Riyadh and it took responsibility of monitoring the Kingdom’s regions gradually until it covered the whole Kingdom on 1380 H. The Ministry of Interior had the following ministers since its establishment:
  • H.R.H. Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, from 27/06/1350 H. until 09/03/1353 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Abdullah Al-Faisal from 26/08/1370 H. until 20/09/1378 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, from 20/09/1378 H. until 08/01/1380 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Musa’ad bin Abdulrahman, from 08/01/1380 H. until 03/07/1380 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Abdulmohsin bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, from 03/07/1380 H. until 01/04/1381 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Faisal bin Turki bin Abdulaziz, from 01/04/1381 H. until 03/06/1382 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Fahd bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud (Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques), from 03/06/1382 H. until 17/03/1395 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, from 17/03/1395 H. until 28/07/1433 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, from 28/07/1433 H. until 20/12/1433 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz Al Saud from 20/12/1433 H. until 26/09/1438 H.
  • H.R.H. Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Minister of Interior, from 26/09/1438 H up to date.

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