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First civil marriage for a non-Muslim couple in the Emirates

Lhe Canadian couple is the first to benefit from this new law on the status of non-Muslims in the Emirati capital. “The issuance of this first civil marriage contract by an Abu Dhabi court is a precedent in the region”, writes WAM.

This rich Muslim Gulf country has strived in recent years to emerge as a modern nation open to the world.

The Emirates, where 90% of some ten million inhabitants are foreigners, has authorized cohabitation, eased restrictions on alcohol and made it easier to obtain residence permits.

Civil marriage is rare in the Middle East and is usually held under the authority of a religious. While many countries in the region do not recognize civil marriage at all, others do, such as Algeria and Tunisia, sometimes under certain conditions.

Competitiveness concern

At the beginning of December, the Emirates decided from 2022 to spend their weekend from Friday-Saturday to Saturday-Sunday and to establish a work week of four and a half days, in particular for the sake of competitiveness. It will be the only Gulf country where the weekend will not be held on Friday, the day of prayer for Muslims, and on Saturday.

It will be the only Gulf country where the weekend will not be held on Friday and Saturday

In Saudi Arabia, a neighbor of the Emirates, liberalization reforms have also been initiated, such as lifting the ban on women driving and allowing concerts or other mixed events, despite a strict crackdown on dissent. .

Like the Emirates, the Saudi kingdom wishes to diversify its oil-dependent economy and transform its capital Riyadh into an international center.


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