Thursday, May 21, 2020

Life in Saudi Arabia

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General Information

Saturday, October 26, 2019

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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

How Native Christians live in the Muslim Dominant Gulf Countries?

Kuwait or call Dawlat al-Kuwait is a country located in the direction of Western Asia which is situated on the northern border of Eastern Arabia. Kuwait shares its borders with Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Kuwait is basically an oil-rich country. Kuwait holds a population of about 4.2 million people in which 2.9 million are expatriates whereas 1.3 million are Kuwaitis. Most the Kuwait's citizens are Muslims and Islam is the official religion of Kuwait but minorities also exist in Kuwait following different religions. In Kuwait, the Christian community is counted the main figure in minorities. The main Christian communion in Kuwait is Roman Catholic and the biggest church for Christian in Kuwait is also following Roman Catholic.

Pastor Amanuel Benjamin Ghareeb is the first Kuwait Christian citizen who was appointed and became a pastor in the year of 1999. Besides Bahrain, Kuwait is the only country who is included in the Gulf Cooperation Council with native Christian population holding citizenship. Statistics of Christian population shows that there are around 260 citizens whereas, in Bahrain, they are almost up to 1,000.   Pastor Amanuel Benjamin Ghareeb who is now 66 years old, gave an interview in which he said that mostly the background of Christian families in Kuwait and Bahrain is from the southeastern side of Turkey while some belong from Iraq or Palestine. The proportion of Christians decreased after changes were made in the law of Kuwait’s citizenship which was formulated in 1982.

Citizenship law of Kuwait stated exclusion of Christians from naturalization. According to the estimation, there are nearly twelve families who are Christian in Kuwaiti. Christian born Kuwaitis get equal rights and privileges as Muslims get in Kuwait.  Although it is still difficult to talk about the Christian representation socially and politically in the Gulf States, there is no Christian ever elected in the national Assembly of Kuwait.  On the 8th of January 1999, appointing of Amanuel Benjamin Ghareeb as a first priest and pastor was considered as a great landmark event for all the Christian communities in the Gulf States.

Christians feel satisfaction in proudly calling themselves Kuwaitis and to be included among those who stayed in Kuwait during the Iraqi occupation in the year of 1990. The Constitution of Kuwait clearly described that every Kuwaiti Christian holds freedom for nomination and full right for participating in local elections. If the population generally accepts and elects anyone from the Christian community, then it would be a great step. Ghareeb added that they won’t like to get any representation which is forcible.

Relationship of Muslims and Christians experienced a few years back during the time when there were attacks by extremists which resulted in targeting Christians on the east side. This situation caused some disturbance and concerns for Kuwaiti Christians but they are thankful to the wise leadership who shielded them and understood the ongoing situation internally in Kuwait. The Ministry of interior provided more protection to churches during their religious Festivals.  In a nutshell, Kuwaiti Christians have full freedom in Kuwait to enjoy every political, social and civil right.

Source: Al Arabiya

Tips for Non-Muslims Living in Saudi Arabia
  1. How Non-Muslims should Respect Muslim culture and beliefs
  2. Tips to Live in Saudi Arabia as Non-Muslims
  3. Major Reasons why Muslims and Christians HATE Jews
  4. How Christians were treated during the reign of Caliph Umar R.A
  5. How Christmas is celebrated in Saudi Arabia?

4 Important Rules to avoid Traffic Violations at Traffic Signals in Saudi Arabia

Saher, in the Arabic language, means ‘one who remains alerted’. Saher cameras are an automatic arrangement for the supervision of traffic violations and it covers the major cities in Saudi Arabia. Saher is a multi-objective projector, which can screen automobiles and track them using license plate recognition equipment. New Saher cameras are being installed on all the roads of Saudi Arabia, first from major cities like Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam. There are some guidelines which we want to mention as part of the traffic rules to save you from hefty fines for traffic violations. Recommended: 8 Features of New Saher Cameras installed in Saudi Arabia

The images are attached for better understanding. There are sketches of cars in which there is a green car showing the correct way, which is not a violation. The red car shows violating actions. Follow what the green car specifies and prevent yourself from being the red car driver. As you know the fine for crossing red light has increased by manifolds, it is good for us to know about these 4 basic rules to avoid any trouble. It is your hard-earned money and you should not lose it for small violations. Moreover, when you cross a red light, you are actually putting your life and the life of many others in danger, so please avoid it.

All the vehicles need to stop at the traffic signal with red light, with a sign board specifying the STOP sign. If there are no signs, one must stop before the ceramic brick lines or zebra crossing which are the “cat eyes” when the signal is red.

The red car shows violation as it did not stop on the red light. As soon as you cross the ceramic brick line, you violated the traffic rule. A car passing this line is not allowed when the signal is red. You must pay for it even if you did not cross the pedestrian walkway and only crossed the cat eyes. Recommended: Traffic Department reduces the fine for crossing red light to SR 3,000

You will commit two violations if you cross the ceramic brick line as well as the pedestrian walkway during the signal’s red light period as both the acts are not allowed when the signal is red.

While you are living in Saudi Arabia, it is important to know that you can take a right turn from the red light. But to avoid traffic violation, you must follow a certain procedure. If you don’t follow this procedure, a Saher camera will flash resulting in the traffic violation which can go up to SR 3,000. Recommended: How to Take Right turn on Red Light with Saher Cameras in KSA?

Traffic Violations
  1. How long it takes to get violation SMS after the Traffic Violation in Saudi Arabia?
  2. Fines for Over-Speeding: SR 900 Fine, Suspension of License and Jail
  3. SR 300 fine for Nose Picking while Driving in Saudi Arabia
  4. 11 Rules related to Headlights to avoid Traffic Violations
  5. SR 15,000 Fine, 1 Night in Jail and 30 Days Vehicle Confiscation if caught using Mobile while Driving

Monday, January 23, 2017

How Saudis reacted when they saw their King sitting in the Car for the first time?

Hadi Al Mansour, who had lived during the glorious era of the late great Saudi King Abdul Aziz, has now narrated how society back in those days had perceived the invention of the automobile. Mansour stated that when people saw the late great King Abdul Aziz riding in one automobile for the first time, during a tour of Riyadh, the local people had become extremely worried about the King as they thought that the modern invention had been affected by some type of curse or witchcraft which would take their beloved King to an unknown place.

These types of incidents happen in any society; however, it has manifested in an increasing manner in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, mainly due to the geographic location and since the society back in those days was still in the beginning or earlier stages of engaging with the technological transformations.  The problems faced by the Muslim world are like those faced by the earlier people of Saudi Arabia. The crisis faced in education, religious rhetoric, the perception of reality, relationships with others and modernity is extremely common problems for all Muslim communities spanning across Indonesia to Morocco. The economy of the country is the main influence behind the transformation of any society, and the oil and wealth due to the oil have contributed immensely to improving the awareness, happiness, and education.

However, the wealth also has a counter effect which slows down the change due to the various financial breakthroughs that keep contributing to the decreasing competency in people in managing their own revenues and resources. These breakthroughs have caused massive corruption on every level as much as it has brought benefits to the people and the economy. The wealth has produced several good results but has, in turn, destroyed numerous essential values of the Muslim societies as well as the Arab people.

As is common knowledge, the oil will no longer continue to control the society as well as the economy. The Deputy Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Prince Mohammed bin Salman has stated that the current oil addiction of the people will be surely overcome. There will be various structural changes in finding new resources that can bridge the major divide that has been caused by our total dependence on oil as fuel, which is depleting the natural resources and is a dangerous dependency.

It has now been more than a century since the story about the late great King Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia, as well as the people of Saudi Arabia who had feared for his wellbeing when they saw him riding in the “witchcraft” powered automobile. The society of Saudi Arabia, much like other Muslim societies around the world, have experienced a true transformation, however, the nature of the society is that they change without even feeling it. This is a part of the sociological nature.

Source: Al Arabiya

Un-known Facts about Saudi Arabia
  1. Top 5 Items Imported in Saudi Arabia which makes up 69% of total imports
  2. Saudi Arabia is the 2nd Largest Country to hire Filipino Workers
  3. Why there is no river in Saudi Arabia?
  4. 9 Reasons, Saudi Arabia is way better than you think it is
  5. 9 Unknown and Fascinating Jeddah Firsts

30% Discount on Car Insurance to Accident Free Customers from April 2017

Recently, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) passed orders for auto insurance firms. The order basically is to give discounts of up to thirty percent to customers who have a claim-free history or no claim record in past three years. The statement is posted officially in Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) website. The statement is about the decision made to provide discounts by the authorities of auto insurance companies based on new criteria of pricing. The discount offer will certainly depend upon the period of years in which there is no claim listed against the insured person.  Auto insurance firms will also give an extra 10 percent discount to those customers who have been in their insurance for a longer period.

This additional ten percent discount is available for only loyal insured customers who renew their expired insurance premium policies from the same company without taking any time interval gap between the insurance premium periods.  The Insurance companies will also take care of their loyal customers by giving them a comprehensive package of auto insurance. The discount offer is applicable to certain conditions. If the customer who did not have any accident or claim during the past one year, the discount rate will be up to 15 percent on customer's new insurance policy. Similarly, if there is no claim or accident registered for a consecutive period of three years, the discount rate will be about 30 percent.

Basically, the discount proportion is only based on the time in which the customer did not report any accident or claimed to the company. The order granted by the Monetary Authority of Saudi Arabia (SAMA) will be put into action from first of April, 2017.   Head of the National Insurance Committee, Abdulaziz Abu Al-Saud stated that the step taken by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) will give confidence and encouragement to drivers who have good driving skills which will result in accident-free driving.

It will also be helpful for those drivers who had accidents in the past. Such drivers will make an extra effort to avoid smashing or crushing in future. This way, everyone will try to avail the new discount offer. The Economist, Mohammed Al-Anqari quoted the decision of SAMA and said that this will surely bring free and fair path for all accident-free drivers which is globally accepted. Any driver who holds a strong record of accidents must submit a greater premium payment.

Every driver needs to accept the traffic rules and regulations which will become a source of decrement in accidents. The insurance committee head at the Asharqia Chamber, Salah- al-Jabr, highlighted the importance of keeping the traffic records of drivers with traffic departments to help in determining the pricing.  In a nutshell, the new order passed by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) is a healthy and safe step for auto insurance firms and auto insured customers. We hope that this step brings positive changes in the form of giving healthy services and excellent protective insurance. 

Source: Saudi Gazette

Auto Insurance
  1. Claiming Insurance after Traffic Accident
  2. Vehicle Insurance in Saudi Arabia
  3. Check Expiry of Vehicle Insurance
  4. Car Owners can get Partial Refund of Insurance Policy on Sale of Vehicle
  5. Process to get Car Insurance through Al Rajhi Takaful

Sunday, January 22, 2017

300 Lashes and 4 Months Jail for creating unrest over unpaid wages issue

Expatriate workers in Saudi Arabia are around 10 million. They started traveling to the country soon after the oil was discovered in the late 1930s. The foreign specialists are designated into the fields belonging to the nation of origin; expatriates from Arab and Western countries usually hold the higher positions, and the labors from Africa, South Asia, and Southeast Asia are involved in lower positions.  The matter of expats in Saudi Arabia is the one which affects all the corners of the globe. Since 30% of the Saudi Arabia residents are workers from other countries, modification done in Saudi work laws influence not only the laborers but their relatives around the globe.

On Tuesday, a handful of expatriate laborers have been punished to lashing and prison for creating unrest in the Kingdom. It was because of their objection or protest over unpaid compensation by Saudi Binladin Group in Riyadh a few months ago. The incident occurred in Umme Al Katad region.  The daily newspaper and Arab News did not specify the nationalities of the 49 labors, therefore, it is unknown as to where those expats belong. The International embassy team contacted by AFP could not instantly provide points.  It was said that an unknown number of expats were punished for four months’ in prison and 300 lashes for destroying public property, fighting and creating unrest.

Others were locked up for 45 days by the Makkah court. The development sector employees, mainly at the Binladin Group and another company Saudi Oger, were left sitting for wages. It was when a breakdown in oil income took place in the Kingdom due to which they were not capable of paying the private organizations it had contracted with.  The news stated that “unpaid laborers” had burned down a few Binladin Group buses in Makkah.  

Management affirmed that seven buses were smoldered but did not provide the reason. At the residence in Umm Al Katad, the fire was blazed by the expats which were controlled by the police and firefighters. The Saudi Binladin Group was established more than 80 years ago. Binladin Group said that it has paid off compensation to 70,000 laid-off staff. The company also said that the staff still working in the company would get their wages as the government settles their debts.  Ten thousand workers of Saudi Oger, directed by Lebanon’s Prime Minister Sa’ad Hariri, were also sitting for salaries.

The government said that in November that it would pay its debts to private organizations by the next month. But on 22nd December, the Finance Minister, Mohammad Al Jadaan, told reporters after announcing the 2017 budget that the government would take another 60 days to pay the debts. Abdulaziz Al-Harthy said that the company can file the lawsuit against the workers who tried to damage or destroy their property. Personally, I stand with the government to punish the culprits. It is important to mention here that the punishment is not given to them for the protest but to damage the public property. There have been so many other protests by these workers against the same employers but government never took any action against them. You don’t have a right to destroy public property in any case.

Source: Gulf News       

Latest News: Torture Cases in KSA
  1. 2 Girls and a Boy starved, locked and beaten by the real mother for 20 years in Madina
  2. Butcher loses his hand making mince out of meat in a Hypermarket in Riyadh
  3. 15 Years Jail, 1500 Lashes for killing 4 months old “JINN” baby
  4. Pakistani mother burned her daughter alive in the honor killing
  5. An Indian Worker buried alive under tons of sand by mistake in Qatif, Saudi Arabia

10 Rights of Hajj and Umrah Pilgrims in Saudi Arabia

Recently, an official document was uploaded on the ministry of Hajj and Umrah website which stated about the protection of rights of pilgrims by taking certain new steps. These steps involve the establishment of communication centers and taking continuous follow-up with the help of supervising committees. The purpose of establishing communication centers and committees is to get registered and consider complaints against any miss management and ensure safety and comfort of the pilgrims. The ministry stated that they will shield and respect the rights of the foreign and domestic pilgrims by monitoring all agreements and commitments done by the companies and services 

  1. Complaints will be filed and claims made by any pilgrim will be forwarded to a special committee who basically takes the decision of punishment for the responsible person.
  2. The ministry will make sure that all basic facilities are provided to the foreign pilgrims which include accommodation, transportation, and food. The ministry will keep a check on proper transportation and accommodation facilities, food and arrangements at the holy sites.
  3. If any Hajj Company is providing low-quality service, it will be suspended from work for short or longer period. They might be fined or possibly the company’s license might be canceled. There will be monitoring of all the services and facilities committed by companies.
  4. The ministry should take care of all the essential financial requirements and verify the licensed companies to ensure the complete commitment of contracts made by them to the pilgrims. Financial affidavit against companies is made to assure that they must obey their contracts and if the concerned company violates their contract, they must represent itself in court for financial consideration.
  5. The ministry will consider the concerns and complaints of pilgrims and will forward them to the investigating committee for solving of their respective issue with the proper decision.
  6. The Ministry is responsible for providing Umrah pilgrims safe and sound accommodation with full comfort when pilgrims are traveling which involves transportation, luggage, and shipping. In the case of original ticket lost, the ministry confirms flight bookings and provides another air ticket to the pilgrims.
  7. Similarly, the rights of Hajj pilgrims include the healthy and safe environment in full comfort zone. The Ministry also keeps full check and balance on the performance of contractual commitments done by companies.
  8. The ministry will provide the compensation amount to the pilgrims which are already set and approves it through official channels. If a company objects on making compensation for the pilgrims, the ministry will represent on behalf of the pilgrims before any legal court authorization.  
  9. The ministry also holds full authority to make changes in the decisions of the committee which involves applying fines on companies for breaking rules and disable a company by making it stop its services for a limited period or more.
  10. The ministry will also force penalties in the form of fines on companies violates the rules and might also order to stop them from working for one or more times with full authority to cancel their license.

In a nutshell, the Ministry provides pilgrims with complete protection and guidance with essential advice by making every possible effort for a healthy and safe stay throughout the spiritual journey of Hajj or Umrah.
Source: Saudi Gazette

Hajj and Umrah
  1. Procedure to Apply for Hajj in Saudi Arabia
  2. Procedure to Check Umrah Visa Status Online
  3. Check Online if you need to pay SR 2,000 as Umrah Visa Fee
  4. 13 Factors to consider while selecting Hajj and Umrah Agent
  5. 10 Useful Tips for those who are travelling for Hajj

Friday, January 20, 2017

Last Words of the Saudi Sniper, Naif Farhan al-Harbi who died on the battlefield

The Military tension between Houthi and Saudi Arabia started in 2015 and from then onwards controversial dispute between Saudi Arabia and Houthi is continued which has not reached any conclusion yet. This military dispute began basically with an initiative step of the bombing but with passing time, this conflict took more heat. After the bombing, actions like the placement of ground forces and blockade of naval borders took place. The Saudi-Houthi conflict made great devastation and destruction. Thousands of innocent lives are lost, soldiers martyred but still, there is no end to this conflict.

There are a lot of different stories caught in the minds of people during this Conflict. Here is one of the most heart touching patriotic and dedicating stories of a Saudi sniper who was martyred during fighting with Houthis group. The Houthis is a basically terrorism based political movement which is called officially as Ansar Allah. Houthi insurgency emerged from the northern side area of Houthi city Sa'dah in the early 1990s. Houthis are backed by Iran in Yemen. Naif Farhan Al-Harbi was a Saudi and blessed with a great talent. He was a skilled sniper who was killed during the fight against the Houthis. Naif Farhan al-Harbi volunteered himself on the frontier lines of southern direction where he was later martyred. Saudi sniper, Naif Farhan al-Harbi was a father of two loving daughters.

Since 2009, Naif was a part of the military police forces and got trained as a sniper. After he became an excellent sniper, he volunteered himself and joined the Saudi armed forces in Fourth Brigade. In October, Naif Farhan al-Harbi got serious injuries during a rescue mission. But he did not give up and stood again after a serious brief recovery. He took a decision for the sake of his homeland and decided to go back to the frontlines.

The sniper filed a request for more extension in his duty and asked to be posted in the same military site which is one of the most uncertain and vulnerable locations on the border of Saudi-Houthi. Brother of Al-Harbi, Ghazi, shared the situation regarding his brother’s death that as soon as Naif Farhan al-Harbi arrived at Abha International Airport to head towards Riyadh, instead of going for vacation, Naif cancelled his vacation and took charge to go back on duty in a military mission which was going to take place the very next day.  

Al-Harbi explained all his apologies to his family in a detailed manner who were excited and impatiently waiting for his arrival. When Al-Harbi came back to the duty on the front lines, his car was targeted and destroyed by a missile which killed him and another soldier. Two other soldiers were injured. He was so patriotic that he just canceled his holiday plan and at the eleventh hour got back to the war zone. He was killed by a missile. Naif Farhan al-Harbi gave his great will with full confidence to his friend by quoting that he should publish the martyrdom news of this dedicated Saudi sniper as a mark of pride and respect for his two loving daughters. May Allah bless his soul in peace (Ameen)

Source: Al Arabiya

Security Conditions in Saudi Arabia
  1. Newly Married Saudi Soldier writes “I miss you” to his wife before he was martyred
  2. How a tweet helped to foil a Bomb Attack on Jeddah Stadium during World Cup match
  3. 8 things every Muslim should know about the Houthi Missile Attack to Makkah
  4. 5 risks and dangers associated with posting pictures of your children online
  5. Top 10 Most Dangerous Countries of the World


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