Saudi Arabia lifts hair-covering rule on ID photos for some – Middle East Monitor


The Saudi Interior Ministry on Friday evening announced the lifting of the rule to cover hair in ID photos only for the 10-14 age group and in some cases of illness.

local newspaper ok reported earlier on Friday that the new amendments to Article 17 of the Implementing Rules of the civil status system decided to delete the sentence specifying the need to cover women’s hair and neck in the national identity card.

Before the amendment, Article 17 stated: “The photograph of the person required by the procedure must be modern, in colour, with a white background, facing forward, without glasses, in focus and with all facial features and in civilian clothes.”

It also stipulated that the photo: “must be 6 x 4 in size and not be taken in the uniforms or clothing of a specific group of citizens. Photos of women must be free of any adornment and women must cover their hair and neck.”

According to the amendment published by the Saudi gazette, Article 17 consists of two paragraphs. Paragraph A states that the personal photo and the photo taken in the automated systems required for the issuance of national identity: “are modern, colored, clear, showing all facial features, on a white background, facing the direction of travel and without glasses and non-prescription contact lenses and free of any accessories or jewelry and may not be worn in the uniform or clothing of any particular group.

Paragraph B now states: “The Department’s civil registry office establishes rules for personal photos and photos taken in automated systems for some age groups, people with special needs and other cases not mentioned.”

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