Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor

Defending Freedom Throughout the MENA Region

Saudi Arabia fees on expats ignores rights of Syrians and Yemenis

Posted On : 2017-07-04
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Saudi Arabia,

Saudi Arabia fees on expats ignores rights of Syrians and Yemenis

Geneva – The decision by the Saudi Ministry of Finance to impose a fee on expatriates, their companions and visitors negatively affects Arab refugees who seek safety in the kingdom.  

   Saudi Arabia should exclude from the fees Syrian and Yemeni refugees, who entered the kingdom seeking security and safety for themselves and their children   

Sandra Owen, spokeswoman for Euro-Med Monitor

The decision, effective 1 June, already is causing harm to Syrian and Yemeni refugees living in Saudi Arabia, further adding to their suffering, says the Geneva-based Euro-Med Monitor.  

“Saudi Arabia should exclude from the restrictions Syrian and Yemeni refugees, who entered the kingdom seeking security and safety for themselves and their children,” says Sandra Owen, spokeswoman for Euro-Med Monitor. “They cannot afford the fees, since they are living under difficult circumstances.”

Furthermore, the Saudi law ignores the international definition of refugees and the respective laws that govern them, leaving them vulnerable to violations of their basic rights.

The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor calls on Saudi authorities to respect international agreements governing refugees and political and civil rights. Host countries must guarantee a life of dignity for refugees, in addition to offering vital support until they can return to their home countries.