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Saudi Arabia: Royal Decree Allows Women to Be Issued Driving Licenses

(Oct. 3, 2017) On September 26, 2017, the King of Saudi Arabia, King Salman, issued a royal decree to add new provisions to Royal Decree M/85 on Traffic.  The new decree gives women the right to be issued a driving license and creates a government authority to execute its provisions within 30 days from the […]

Egypt/Saudi Arabia: Supreme Constitutional Court Halts Decision of High Administrative Court Concerning Maritime Border Demarcation Agreement

(July 5, 2017) On June 21, 2017, the Supreme Constitutional Court of Egypt repealed all the decisions issued by the High Administrative Court on the Egyptian-Saudi Maritime Border Demarcation Agreement. The repeal is temporary until the Supreme Constitutional Court decides whether or not the bilateral agreement is constitutional. (Egypt’s Constitutional Court Halts all Verdicts on […]

Egypt/Saudi Arabia: Egyptian Parliament Ratifies Maritime Border Demarcation Agreement

(June 26, 2017) On June 14, 2017, in a general session, the Egyptian Council of Representatives (the parliament) ratified the maritime border demarcation agreement between Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Based on this bilateral agreement, Egypt will cede its territorial rights to two Red Sea islands (Tiran and Sanfair) to Saudi Arabia. (Egypt Parliament to Vote […]

Saudi Arabia: Shura Council Denies Social Media Reports on Resolution to Allow Women to Drive

(June 7, 2017) The official spokesman of Saudi Arabia’s Shura Council has denied social media reports that went viral at the end of March claiming that the Council was forwarding a resolution to the Council of Ministers seeking approval for the country’s women to drive. (Tariq A. Al-Maeena, Getting Behind the Wheel in Saudi Arabia, […]

Saudi Arabia: Journalist Sentenced to Seven Years of Imprisonment

(Feb. 7, 2017) On January 26, 2017, a Saudi journalist was sentenced to seven years in prison after a Saudi Arabian court convicted him of committing crimes against the national security of the state.  (Saudi Writer Jailed for Seven Years, KUWAIT TIMES (Jan. 26, 2017).)  The Criminal Court of Riyadh, which is a specialized court […]

Egypt/Saudi Arabia: Supreme Administrative Court Rejects Government Appeal in Red Sea Islands Agreement Case

(Jan. 25, 2017) On January 16, 2017, the Supreme Administrative Court of Egypt rejected the Egyptian government’s appeal against a decision issued by the court of first instance that repealed a bilateral agreement between Egypt and Saudi Arabia on maritime demarcation.  The agreement included the transfer of sovereignty of Tiran and Sanafir Islands in the […]

Egypt/Saudi Arabia: Bilateral Agreement on Maritime Demarcation Approved by Ministers

(Jan. 12, 2017) On December 29, 2016, the Council of Ministers of Egypt approved a maritime demarcation agreement between the governments of Egypt and Saudi Arabia. According to the agreement, Saudi Arabia will assume control over two islands in the Red Sea that have been under the control of Egypt. Following its approval of the […]

Egypt: Repeal of Maritime Demarcation Agreement with Saudi Arabia

(June 23, 2016) On June 21, 2016, the Egyptian Administrative Court rendered a decision nullifying the recent maritime agreement reached between Saudi Arabia and Egypt.  The agreement, which was drawn up in April 2016, allowed the ceding of the Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia.  The Saudi Shura Council and the Egyptian […]

Saudi Arabia: 32 People on Trial for Treason and Spying

(Feb. 29, 2016) On February 21, 2016, the Specialized Criminal Court in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, began the trial of a group of 30 Saudis, an Afghani, and an Iranian on charges of treason and spying for Iran. The accused were allegedly in direct contact with the Iranian Intelligence Services, and some of them are said […]

Saudi Arabia: Religious Decree Forbids Chess

(Jan. 28, 2016) On January 21, 2016, Sheikh Abdulaziz al-Sheikh, the Grand Mufti, of the Sunni sect of Islam, who represents the formal religious institution of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, issued a religious decree to ban the game of chess. He stated that he had issued the fatwa forbidding chess because it is like […]