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Citizens of 80 countries can now enter Qatar visa-free

Citizens of 80 countries can now enter Qatar visa-free

Officials annoucning the new visa policy at a press conference (Photo: Salim Matramkot)


Citizens of 80 Countries Can Now Enter Qatar Visa-free Qatar will allow visa-free entry for citizens of 80 countries, with immediate effect, Qatari officials announced today.

The countries include the UK, the USA, Canada, India, South Africa, Seychelles, Australia and New Zealand.

Qatar Airways evaluates routes opened by boycotting countries

Citizens of those countries wishing to visit Qatar will not need to apply or pay for a visa; instead, a multi-entry waiver will be issued free-of-charge at the port of entry, upon presentation of a valid passport with a minimum validity of six months and a confirmed onward or return ticket.

Depending on the nationality of the visitor, the waiver will either be valid for 180 days, and allow the visitor to spend a total of 90 days in Qatar (multiple-entry); or it will be valid for 30 days and entitle the visitor to spend up to 30 days in

Qatar (multiple-entry) with the possibility of applying for an extension of the waiver for an additional 30 days.*

Hassan Al Ibrahim, Acting Chairman of Qatar Tourism Authority said, “With 80 nationalities eligible for a free visa waiver upon arrival, Qatar is now the most open country in the region and we are delighted to invite visitors to discover our renowned hospitality, cultural heritage and natural treasures.”

In November 2016, Qatar introduced a free transit visa, which allows passengers of all nationalities transiting in Qatar for a minimum of five hours to stay in Qatar for up to 96 hours (four days). In May 2017, QTA and Qatar Airways launched +Qatar, a package which includes a free night’s stay in a 5- or 4- star hotel in Doha, alongside a complimentary transit visa.

*Entry to Qatar is approved at the sole discretion of Qatar’s Ministry of Interior.


Assembly to review new medical fees

Image result for kuwait parliament

The increase in fees of medical services for expats will be reviewed by Parliament as MPs believe that the decision deserved a second look, local media reported. Although, the minister has the authority to issue such a decision and Parliament has no right to oppose it, many MPs are of the opinion that a legislative-level review maybe helpful in passing a law and chalking out a clear mechanism for fees on Kuwait’s health services.

The daily reported that the parliamentary committee on health will soon hold a meeting to discuss the increase of fees. Though the committee agrees on the new decision in principle, it objects to the decision to grant exemptions to certain groups from the increase.

Trained domestics at low cost available very soon’


Rates can’t be cut to KD 350: official

He noted the company is working hard to offer trained domestic workers at low cost and also preparing to sign contracts with three countries before Eid Al-Adha to supply domestic workers starting from October 2017. He stated the company has since addressed the Union of Consumer Cooperative Societies to specify six offices at the cooperative societies in all six governorates to fulfill transactions.

He noted the company’s transactions will be done electronically (online) and the sponsor only have to submit the application to the website without any need to present documents in person. Meanwhile, the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Kuwait said the launch of Al-Durra Company for Domestic Workers in the next few months will not affect the activities of other domestic offices.

He denied the cost of hiring domestic workers might be reduced to KD 350 as alleged on social media. He reiterated the cost of bringing in Sri Lankan domestic worker is subject to supply and demand.

Source : Arab Times

Trump threatens North Korea with 'fire and fury

US president says reports of new nuclear threat will be met with ‘fire and fury like world has never seen’

Bedminster, United States: President Donald Trump on Tuesday laid down the gauntlet to nuclear-armed North Korea, warning Pyongyang that if it continues to threaten the United States, it will be struck with “fire and fury.”

The tough talk from Trump came after The Washington Post, citing US intelligence, reported that Kim Jong-Un’s regime had produced a nuclear warhead small enough to fit inside its missiles.

“North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen,” said Trump, who was speaking at the start of a meeting on the domestic opioid crisis at his golf club in New Jersey.

“He has been very threatening beyond a normal state, and as I said they will be met with the fire and fury and, frankly, power, the likes of which this world has never seen before.”

A Washington Post report earlier in the day suggested that North Korea had invented a miniaturized warhead that it has the capability of attaching to the intercontinental ballistic missiles its been testing.

China fires 'dozens of missiles'

China fires 'dozens of missiles' in show of strength during live-fire drills near North Korea as tension escalates over Kim Jong-un's ambitious nuclear test 

China's navy and air force flexed their muscles in live-fire drills close to North Koreaamid escalating tension over Kim Jong-un's nuclear test. 

The drill included the firing of missiles and according to the ministry aimed to hone the military's abilities to conduct coastal assaults. 

It comes as China announced it was prepared to face the consequences of backing a US-drafted UN Security Council resolution on sanctions against North Korea. 

Military exercises: Destroyer Taizhou fires missile during a drill on August 7, 2017 in China

Military exercises: Destroyer Taizhou fires missile during a drill on August 7, 2017 in China

Video footage shows the drill taking place in the Yellow Sea and Bohai Gulf

Video footage shows the drill taking place in the Yellow Sea and Bohai Gulf

Both the navy and army conducted exercises which involved the firing of dozens of missiles 

The live drills were held on August 7 just off China's east coast in the Yellow Sea and Bohai Gulf, adjacent to the Korean Peninsula. 

Both the navy and army conducted exercises which involved the firing of dozens of missiles. 

Footage from CCTV News shows sections of the drill taking place.  

Four missile frigates fire missiles during a drill on August 7 in the Yellow Sea and Bohai Sea
China's Ministry of Defence claim that the drills were aimed at testing weapons
Chinese government announced that it was prepared to face the consequences of sanctioning North Korea

Ministry bans Japanese soy sauce brand after alcohol detected in samples

Dubai: The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) issued a warning on Tuesday prohibiting the imports of Japanese Kikkoman soy sauce due to its alcohol content.

The ministry also bans the circulation of the product in the UAE market in accordance with Ministerial Resolution No. (539) of 2012 on the Standard Guide to the Procedures for the Prohibition of Handling and Banning of Food. 

The decision came based on the results of tests conducted by specialised accredited laboratories, which confirmed that several samples of the product with different production dates violated the rules.

Having received notifications of alcohol content in Kikkoman soy sauce from the concerned authorities, the ministry urged consumers to dispose of any Japanese-made Kikkoman soy sauce they may have purchased.

The ministry also clarified that this decision targets specifically Kikkoman soy sauce made in Japan and does not include Kikkoman products produced in other countries. 

Kuwaiti in the Expo Brazil invented the solar energy that converts electric power to run the refrigerator and air conditioner

Kuwait arrests suspects over Hezbollah intelligence links

13 suspects have been nabbed so far in a nationwide manhunt

Kuwait has arrested two new suspects on charges of intelligence links with Lebanese pro-Iran militia Hezbollah with the intent to carry out antagonistic acts in the northern Arabian Gulf country.

The arrests were part of a massive operation launched by the Kuwaiti authorities to re-arrest members of Al Abdali terror cell who were sentenced to prison terms in June, but have disappeared.

The two were among a group of eight suspects referred to the public prosecution and will be remanded in custody for 21 days pending further investigations.

One of the two suspects is a fugitive who was convicted in the 1980s in the case of explosions that hit the country.

He was pardoned in the early 1990s by the Emir following the liberation of Kuwait from the Iraqi occupation.

Sources told Kuwaiti daily Al Qabas that the public prosecution has summoned six Kuwaiti nationals reportedly involved in harbouring members of Al Abdali cell.

The security operations have so far netted 13 suspects on charges of being members of Hezbollah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and harbouring 12 fugitives, the sources added.

“Greater efforts will be exerted within the next hours to locate and arrest more suspects,” the sources said.

The Al Abdali case has been the hottest issue this summer following a final court verdict in June and news that 18 defendants have disappeared amid reports they had fled the country, a claim that was dismissed by the interior ministry.

The Al Abdali case emerged in the open on August 13, 2015, when Kuwait’s Interior Ministry said that it busted a terrorist cell and uncovered a large cache of arms, ammunitions and explosives hidden underground at a farm in Abdali. The cache contained 24 hand grenades, 65 guns, 56 RPGs and 144kg of bomb-making material.

On September 1, 2015, Kuwait’s public prosecution said 26 defendants, including one Iranian, would stand trial for the possession of weapons, ammunition and explosives and espionage for Iran and Hezbollah.

It said that 24 defendants faced charges of engaging in acts likely to undermine the unity and safety of Kuwait and of intelligence with Iran and Hezbollah.

However, the Iranian embassy on September 3 downplayed the significance of the terrorist cell and the charges of espionage, saying that the case was a domestic Kuwaiti issue pertaining mainly to the discovery of weapons and ammunitions.

However, the Kuwaiti cabinet voiced “deep indignation and condemnation over the heinous acts and grave charges” revealed by the indictment of 26 people for the illegal possession of arms and contacts with Iran and Hezbollah.

“The charges involve dimensions and risks that pose a threat to the nation’s security, sovereignty and stability, as well as to its unity and territorial integrity, particularly in light of the huge amounts of explosives, arms and ammunition seized by the security bodies last month, and the way they were hidden,” the cabinet said.

The cabinet stressed that it would never tolerate targeting or harming Kuwaiti citizens and expatriates and that all the concerned agencies would take the necessary measures to preserve security and safety in the country.

The trial opened on September 15, 2015, and the criminal court on January 12 ruled death sentences for the Iranian in absentia and for a Kuwaiti defendant. It also decided a life sentence for one suspect and prison terms for the others ranging from five to 15 years.

The verdicts were appealed and the Court of Appeals in July last year ruled that 15 members of the cell were not guilty in the case of espionage for Iran and Hezbollah.

In June, the Cassation Court, the highest court in the country, overturned the death sentence of one accused and commuted it to life in prison. It also cancelled the acquittal of 15 defendants and sentenced two to 15 years in prison, 15 to 10 years and three to five years.

In July, and following a report that some of the convicts disappeared on the day the Cassation Court issued its prison verdicts, the interior ministry said there was no evidence that the convicts had left the country and appealed for assistance from Kuwaitis and residents in locating them.

The ministry warned that anyone withholding information on the whereabouts of the convicts would face legal measures.

“We call on all citizens and residents to cooperate with security forces and provide any information they may have,” the statement said.

“All those who conceal any information on the convicts or are accomplices in helping them escape will face incarceration for two years and, or, a fine of up to KD2,000.”

The ministry published the pictures of the 16 convicts wanted by the police in an effort to help people identify and report them.

On July 20, Kuwait asked the Iranian embassy to reduce the number of its diplomats from 19 to four.

The diplomats, declared personae non gratae, were given 45 days to leave Kuwait.

The request was made in a protest letter to the Iranian diplomatic mission in Kuwait, asking for shutting down the cultural mission and the military bureau and announcing that all joint commissions between the two countries were suspended.

Source : Gulf News

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