191101 sultan haitham bin tariq
Sultan Haitham Bin Tariq Al Said of Oman Image Credit: File

Dubai: Sultan Haitham bin Tarik of Oman issued a royal decree on Sunday introducing significant changes to the country's laws regarding the marriage of Omani citizens to foreigners.

Royal Decree No. 23/2023 supersedes and cancels Royal Decree No. 58/93, as well as any related decisions made in its implementation.

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While the new decree does not override Islamic Sharia law or public order, it does provide an updated framework for documenting marriages between Omani nationals and foreigners. Under Article (3), such marriages must be recorded in accordance with relevant laws and royal decrees, and foreign documentation must be authenticated by both the foreign country's authorities and the Omani Foreign Ministry.

Additionally, Article (4) validates all previously issued foreign documentation of marriages between Omanis and foreigners, as long as they are authenticated by the Omani Foreign Ministry and do not contradict the provisions of Article (2), which stipulates that certain public jobs may still require Omanis to refrain from marrying foreigners.

The new decree also requires Units of the State's Administrative Apparatus and other public legal persons to implement its provisions within their respective areas of jurisdiction, as outlined in Article (5). Any previous legislation that contravenes the new decree is now void, as stated in Article (6).

This decree, which takes effect immediately upon publication in the Official Gazette, reflects Oman's evolving attitude towards intermarriage and signals the country's commitment to ensuring that all marriages between Omani citizens and foreigners are properly documented and authenticated.