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Saudi Arabia announces big change in its citizenship law. Deets inside


Saudi Arabia has announced a big change in its citizenship rule according to a report by the Khaleej Times.

Under this new rule, children of Saudi women who are married to ex-pats can now apply for citizenship after the age of 18.

Saudi officials have approved an amendment to Article 8 of the Saudi Arabian Nationality System.

Citing the Saudi Gazatte report, the daily said Prime Minister can only grant the citizenship.

As per Article 8 of the Saudi Arabian Nationality System, " A person who is born in the Kingdom to a foreign father and a Saudi mother may be granted Saudi citizenship if certain requirements are met...".

The conditions include "that the person needs to be fluent in the Arabic language; must have permanent residence status in the Kingdom when he comes of legal age; he has to be of good conduct and sound character; should not have any criminal convictions or imprisonment for a period exceeding six months for any indecent act".

Separately, Saudi Arabia has decided that it will not impose limits on the number of pilgrims for this year's hajj.

"The number of pilgrims will return to what it was before the pandemic, without any age limit," Minister of Hajj and Umrah Tawfiq al-Rabiah told reporters in Riyadh.

The pilgrimage -- one of five pillars of Islam, and which all able-bodied Muslims with the means are required to perform at least once -- is scheduled for June.

In 2019, about 2.5 million people took part in the rituals. For the next two years, numbers were drastically curtailed numbers due to the pandemic.

In 2022, nearly 900,000 pilgrims, including some 780,000 from abroad, were welcomed to Islam's holiest cities of Mecca and Medina.

At that time, they had to be aged under 65, as well as have a vaccination against Covid-19 and present a negative test.