Expats can make family visit visas permanent

Updated 06 June 2014

Expats can make family visit visas permanent

A visit visa can be converted into a permanent residency permit for a close family member of an expatriate worker under special conditions, a senior Passport Department official said during a phone-in service with Arab News readers on Wednesday.
“Yes, this is possible,” said Col. Mohammed Al-Hussain, spokesperson of the department. “However, such a request has to be approved by the Interior Ministry.”
In the two-hour phone-in with callers, he also said it was possible for expatriates to place their elderly parents on their iqamas.
The Kingdom currently issues visit visas for expatriates’ spouses, children and parents of their spouses.
A caller from Riyadh wanted to know if his wife, who is in the Kingdom on a visit visa, could get it converted into a permanent residency permit or iqama.
Al-Hussain advised expatriates to abide by the Kingdom’s rules and regulations.
One caller asked Al-Hussain to explain the requirements needed for exit/re-entry visas.
“Everything is now online. There is no need to produce the exit/re-entry document at the immigration counter as was the case in the past.”
The caller then asked about the two types of online services — Abshir for companies with less than 100 employees and Muqeem for firms with more than 100 employees. The caller, a Pakistani expat, said the exit/re-entry papers issued under the Muqeem program are widely accepted at Pakistani airports but there are difficulties with the Abshir service.
The caller said while no documents are required at the Saudi immigration counters, back in Pakistan this was not the case. “When I was traveling back from Islamabad, I was asked to produce the exit/re-entry document,” he said.
Al-Hussain said he could not speak about other countries but “as far as we are concerned we don’t need the exit/re-entry papers anymore. Everything is online. Your passport is enough.”
He said those expatriates who don’t have anyone to look after their parents when they reach the age of 60, can approach the “Qanoon” and “Tadrees” (legal and studies) cell at the Passport Department with their case. “The Passport Department will rule on such cases by looking into all aspects of the request and their genuineness,” he said.


Houthis target Saudi Khamis Mushayt in repeat attack

Updated 22 August 2019

Houthis target Saudi Khamis Mushayt in repeat attack

  • Houthis claimed 10 drones which hit a Saudi natural gas liquefaction plant
  • The Arab coalition said the Houthis are becoming desperate because of their losses

DUBAI: The Arab coalition destroyed two Houthi drones targeting Khamis Mushayt city in south west Saudi Arabia, the state news agency SPA reported on Thursday.

It was the latest in a spate of drone attacks claimed by the Houthi militia in recent weeks, including 10 drones that hit the Saudi Shaybah natural gas liquefaction plant near the UAE border.

Arab Coalition spokesman Col. Turki Al-Maliki said the coalition were taking all possible measures and employing best practices to intercept the drones and stop attacks,

And said the the repeated attacks showed the militants were becoming increasingly desperate as they continued to lose on a daily basis.