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Bahrain to grant entry visas to Qataris only on humanitarian grounds

The Interior Ministry in Bahrain has revealed that Bahrain would issue entry visas to Qataris who are members of mixed Bahraini-Qatari families. But, the visas would be granted on humanitarian basis and under specific conditions only, including monitoring of movement of money.

The ministry statement revealed that the number of individuals who would be exempted would be limited, as part of framework to protect Bahraini society. The special cases and other application procedures would be determined later.

Bahrain early this week said that it would stop issuing entry visas to Qatari nationals owing to the ‘irresponsible’ acts of Qatari authorities that did not take into consideration the rights of neighbouring countries, or the principles of international law.

Qatar students who are taking up courses in Bahrain, and Qatari nationals holding valid visas would be exempted from the entry visa ban.

Nationals from GCC countries are allowed to travel across the council with just their ID cards, while foreigners holding GCC residence permits are eligible for a visit-visa on arrival.

But, on 31st October, Bahrain imposed entry visas on Qatari nationals and residents and mentioned that the decision was to protect its security and preserve its stability.
The authorities launched a hotline to enable members of Bahraini-Qatari families to register their details and to have their travel requests pertaining to essential matters such as studies, work, weddings and medical treatment processed.

The Foreign Minister in Bahrain, Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa said the decision to impose restriction on entry visas for Qatari nationals was taken as several people coming from countries that sponsored terrorism were given Qatari documents that allowed them to travel across GCC freely.

Shaikh Khalid made it clear that the restrictions were not intended for people of Qatar, but is made against Qatar granting visas and residency to citizens of countries sponsoring terrorism and extremism.

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