Is this why Saudi Arabia won’t take Iraqi refugees?

Middle East Online reports:

RIYADH – Saudi Arabia’s labour minister said in remarks published on Monday that Rihadh supports a residency limit on the millions of foreign workers in the Gulf to prevent them from ever gaining a political voice in the oil-rich region.

“We do not want the day to come when we are forced allow the (foreign) workers to be represented in our parliaments or municipal councils,” Ghazi al-Gosaibi told the Arabic language Al-Eqtisadiah.

It’s not just Saudi Arabia. That country is one of the 6 Gulf states who bring in foreign workers to work in their oil industry. The workers now make up 37 percent of the population there.

Bahrain’s Labour Minister Majeed al-Alawi said in an interview last year that he supported a six-year residency cap, fearing expatriate workers were eroding the national character of states in the Gulf.

I don’t see what’s so great about their national character that they have to preserve it, but that’s just my western-civilization chauvinism showing. At any rate, I guess this is why Saudi Arabia has not offered to take any Iraqi refugees. Yes, the Iraqis are Muslims, and most of them are Arabs, but they are not accustomed to forbidding their women to drive, or arresting them for having coffee in public with an unrelated man, so they would definitely erode Saudi Arabia’s national character.

Hat tip: Center for Vigilant Freedom.

4 thoughts on “Is this why Saudi Arabia won’t take Iraqi refugees?

  1. Although i agree in general with your comments regarding relgious freedom and civil rights. I also understand the position of the Labor Minister against allowing foriegn workers to gain political significance. It is similar to the worries in the U.S. and Euroupe against immigrants. it is the fear that increasing number of foriegners in a country will change its demographic composition and probably affects the stability of a country’s political system.

    I believe that was the mirit of the Minister’s comment.


  2. The angle that struck me with this is that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States are busy sending their minions to America to become completely entrenched in our population and government.

    Saudi Arabia also funds many extremist mosques here. Yet, no Bibles are even allowed in Saudi Arabia.

    We are called racist, xenophobic, hate mongers because we wish to maintain a Judeo-Christian country and yet I never hear the western elites refer to those Islamic governments in the same terms.


  3. I think a better explanation for Saudi reluctance to take Iraqi refugees is that tens of thousands of from the 1991 Gulf War ended up in Saudi refugee camps until 2003. The camps, in the area of Ar-Ar along the Iraq border, were considered to be both a financial drain and a security risk.


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