IDs a must for Saudi women

Updated 27 March 2013
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IDs a must for Saudi women

The Council of Ministers yesterday issued a new law making independent national identity cards mandatory for Saudi women within a period of seven years. Saudi males 15 years old and older should also obtain separate identity cards.
“A Saudi citizen completing 15 years of age must have a national ID card of his own, and this shall be optional for those between 10 and 15 years,” the new law said. The card shall be issued on the basis of the Central Civil Registry.
The new law added: “A Saudi woman must have a national ID card on the basis of a phased plan, but without exceeding seven years. Afterwards, a national identity card shall be the only way to prove her identity.”
Saudi women have welcomed the Cabinet decision. Mysar Jabr, a female student, said it was another step toward empowering women. “It is vital for women, especially when they are in business and serve as Shoura members. They are not just dependent members,”she told Arab News. “Many civil institutions and government departments require IDs to provide their services,” Jabr said. “Before, women had to bring at least one family member to identify her.”
Jabr said her friend’s father didn’t want his daughter to have her own national identity card, fearing that she will be independent and can do whatever she wants. “She never got the ID card until she got married,” Jabr said.
An official at the women’s section in the Civil Affairs Department in Jeddah told Arab News that the ID can be used by women to meet the requirements of various departments. She added that girls now have to get their own IDs when completing 18 years.
Arwa Turkistani, another student, was not very excited by the decision as she thinks that women would still require men besides them to complete most transactions. However, she said it is a good move that would give women at least have self satisfaction.


Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed Al-Hamdan, undersecretary of the Department of Publications Affairs and Scholarly Research

Updated 19 July 2019
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Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed Al-Hamdan, undersecretary of the Department of Publications Affairs and Scholarly Research

Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed Al-Hamdan has been the undersecretary of the Department of Publications Affairs and Scholarly Research since June 2018. 

Al-Hamdan recently announced that the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Dawah and Guidance had started preparations for its Hajj season book distribution program, which will oversee the distribution of 8 million copies of the Holy Qur’an, ritual books and manuals to pilgrims. Fifty-two books in more than 30 languages have reportedly been approved as part of the program.

Al-Hamdan also noted that the Islamic electronic library has created a website containing all of the ministry’s written and audio versions of books related to Hajj and Umrah: www.islamic-ebook.com. The portal will be made available for public use at every international airport in the Kingdom, several exit-port centers and some mosques and “important sites.”

In 2018, Al-Hamdan was part of two significant Saudi Arabian delegations overseas. In November, he traveled to the 31st Conference of Muslims of Latin America and the Caribbean in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The conference explored the possibilities of teaching Arabic in Latin America and the Caribbean, and was organized by the Center for Islamic Advocacy in Brazil in cooperation with the Islamic Ministry in the Kingdom.

Al-Hamdan also visited several cities in Serbia where he met with Chief of Scholars in Belgrade Sheikh Saad Nasovic, and other prominent figures from the Muslim community in Serbia.