Jan 6, 2009

World - UAE for tighter visitor visa rules

DUBAI: The UAE is considering a proposal to ensure that visitors to the country furnish a clean police record and a bank statement from their
country of origin, a senior immigration official has said.

The Ministry of Interior (MoI) is seriously considering the Federal National Council (FNC) proposal after the ministry figures revealed that 80 per cent of pickpockets and thieves, nabbed in recent crimes, entered the country on tourist and business visas, a Khaleej Times report said.

Brigadier Nasser Al Awadhi Al Minhali, Acting Director General of Naturalisation and Residency Department at the ministry, said the restrictions under consideration would be applicable for visit, business and tourist visas.

"Minister of Interior, has issued these directives calling for studying the proposal of the FNC, and take action on it as soon as possible, if the new restrictions prove practical and realistic," he told the newspaper.

"The Naturalization and Residency departments in the country have arrested many criminals, the majority of whom had entered the country on visit, tourist and business visas. This has prompted the department to chalk out new steps, including the ones proposed by the FNC," he said.

The move to make amendments follow changes introduced by the Ministry of Interiors in 2007 that aimed to reduce the number of illegals overstaying on visas in the country

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