Saudi Arabia implements end to travel restrictions for Saudi women

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RIYADH — Saudi Arabia has begun allowing adult women to travel without permission and to exercise more control over family matters, Saudi Press Agency reported on Tuesday, following a flurry of royal decrees issued in the beginning of this month.

The regulatory changes stipulated that a Saudi passport should be issued to any citizen who applies for it and that any person above the age of 21 does not need permission to travel.

They also granted women for the first time the right to register child birth, marriage or divorce and to be issued official family documents and be eligible as a guardian to children who are minors.

“The passports and civil status departments and their branches in all regions of the Kingdom have started to implement the amendments stipulated in the royal decree,” the SPA report said, citing an interior ministry source.

The source stated that those who have any queries about the matter can contact with the competent authorities at the Directorate General of Passports (Jawazat) and the Ministry of Interior Agency for Civil Status through their twitter accounts dedicated to it on the following links ( and ( or telephone number of Jawazat (992) and Civil Status Department (920022133).

Meanwhile, hundreds of Saudi women reportedly crossed into Bahrain on Monday unaccompanied. The number of women who crossed the entry points of the Eastern Province alone has exceeded 1,000 within a few hours. The women have taken advantage of the enforcement of the new regulation through an announcement by the General Directorate of Passports (Jawazat) on its website on Monday, Al-Yaum newspaper reported.

The new amendments in the Travel Documents Regulation, which were approved by the Council of Ministers recently, allow a woman to apply for and obtain a passport without requiring the approval of her male guardian. The amendments included granting the same rights to males and females above 21 years of age, and travel permit for custody of minors. According to the amendments, all Saudis under the age of 21 are required to have permission from their guardians for obtaining travel documents. However, three categories of Saudi citizens under the age of 21 have been exempted from this: foreign scholarship students, employees taking part in official trips abroad with a letter of consent from the employer, and those who are married. As for foreign scholarship students, they need to produce a certificate from the Ministry of Education in this regard. In the case of a minor whose father is dead, mother will be the guardian, the amendments stated.

The new historic move is part of expanded social reforms initiated by Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, and that also granted women the right to drive last year, as well as study at university, undergo surgery or get a job without male consent.

Many Saudi women took to social media to praise the new liberalization. “The women’s age begins,” one wrote on Twitter. Another expressed her gratitude to the Crown Prince, posting: “Thank you, MBS.” Under the old system, women had to seek permission from their official guardians – usually their father or husband, but sometimes a brother or son – to marry, apply for a passport or leave Saudi Arabia. The new decrees grant every adult citizen, male or female, the right to freely obtain a passport, but did retain some restrictions on the under-21s and the rights of women to request passports for their children. Paternal permission is still required for under-21s without study plans to travel abroad and only the male parent can apply for passports for offspring under 15. Other reforms granted women’s rights to register a marriage, divorce or child’s birth, be issued official family documents and become a child’s official guardian. Requesting passports for adopted children — previously a complex process requiring special permission — has been simplified for adoptive fathers and mothers alike.


Source : Saudi Gazette

Hiroshima marks 5th anniversary of deadly mudslides

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Hiroshima marked the fifth anniversary Tuesday of landslides that claimed 77 lives, with residents in the affected areas holding a memorial service for the victims.

The memorial was attended by the bereaved families and Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui, among others.

Flowers were left in various places across the western city, including in Asakita and Asaminami wards, two areas hit hard by the August 2014 mudslides.

The governments of Hiroshima city and prefecture oversaw remembrance ceremonies until 2017 and residents have been organizing them since then.

At memorial monuments engraved with the names of victims, families offered prayers for the souls of their loved ones.

One such monument standing in Asaminami Ward in Hiroshima carries the names of a newly wedded couple, Minami Yuasa and her husband Yasuhiro, who were 28 and 29 respectively at the time of their death.

“Even after five years, I still feel lonely and think, if only we’d done this or that, they would have been saved,” said Minami’s father, Junji Wakamatsu, 56, as he offered flowers with his wife.

Minami had been pregnant at the time, so her parents also placed a photograph of their “grandchild,” a composite of the faces of their daughter and son-in-law, together with photos of the couple at the monument.

“I’m sure they are enjoying their days, free from pain and difficulty,” said Minami’s mother, Naomi, 57.

Measures by the national and prefectural governments to improve defenses against landslides, such as slope reinforcements and mudslide control dams, have been completed in 96 locations as of the end of July. Work is ongoing in three final areas.

The controls proved effective when torrential rains swept western Japan last year, with the dams able to prevent sediment inflow in Asaminami Ward while offsetting other risks.

In an effort spearheaded by the city, new evacuation routes are also currently being established.

“Every year we see the faces of those we lost and it brings back memories. I want to continue to protect the monuments and refresh my heart,” said Kazuo Zaihara, 71, head of one of the local neighborhood associations in Asaminami.

Bereaved families from the 2018 floods in western Japan also attended the ceremony in the ward. Fujiko Ueki, 46, who lost her 18-year-old son in Aki Ward in Hiroshima, said, “I interacted (with families) after the disaster, and we were able to share our feelings. I hope to continue the bonding between disaster-hit areas.”

In the early hours of Aug 20, 2014, localized torrential downpours caused a series of landslides in residential areas close to mountains near Hiroshima.

Around 400 houses were either washed away or damaged, with 74 people killed. An additional three people later died of causes deemed to be related to the disaster.


Source : Japan Today

Qatar 2022 World Cup emblem will be revealed on Sept 3

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20 Aug 2019 – 18:36

Qatar 2022 World Cup emblem will be revealed on Sept 3


Zurich: FIFA have confirmed on Tuesday that September 3 will be the date that the official emblem for the Qatar 2022 World Cup will be revealed.

In a post on their website, FIFA noted that the emblem for the 2022 event will be unveiled on Tuesday, September 3.

Qatar will host the World Cup for the first time in the history of the Middle East and the Arab countries, starting from November 21 until December 18, 2022.

Qatar is set to host the FIFA Club World Cup next December as part of its preparations for Qatar 2022 World Cup.

Mirziyoyev’s new Air Force 1 unveiled

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The new Air Force 1 of the Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, a Boeing-787 Dreamliner was unveiled by the expert of Buyuk Kelajak NGO, Rakhmad Sobirov on his Facebook page.

Mirziyoyevs Air Force 1

Earlier, the Airbus A340-300 Bourkhan aircraft, owned by the Uzbek-born Russian businessman Alisher Usmanov, was leased for the President’s long-haul flights.

Mirziyoyevs Air Force 1 2

In addition, in August last year, the presidential press service showcased the presidential helicopter – Airbus Helicopters H175.


Source : Tashkent Times