Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Is your name now 'banned' in Saudi Arabia?

King of Saudi Arabia: Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
King of Saudi Arabia: Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
The Prince of Wales visited the Shura parliament building in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, last year
The Prince of Wales visited the Shura parliament building in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, last year

Saudi Arabia's interior ministry has banned 50 names they argue contradict the culture or religion of the Kingdom, according to reports by local media.

Parents in the Kingdom will reportedly no longer be able to call their children by names such as Linda, Alice, Elaine or Binyamin (Arabic for Benjamin) after the civil affairs department at the ministry issued a list of the prohibited names.

Binyamin is believed in Islam to be the son of Prophet Jacob, but is also the name of the current Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Some names on the list are allegedly banned by the interior ministry because they are considered “blasphemous,” non-Arabic or non-Islamic, or contradictory to the kingdom’s culture or religion, Gulf News has reported.

The ban was also allegedly justified by the ministry because some of the names were deemed foreign or "inappropriate".

Other sets of forbidden names include those with royal connotations, such as Sumuw (highness), Malek (king) and Malika (queen).

Some on the list do not fit into any of these categories however, leaving the reason for banning them open to speculation.

The full list of forbidden names as reported in Gulf News is listed below:

 

Malaak (angel)

Abdul Aati

Abdul Naser

Abdul Musleh

Binyamin (Arabic for Benjamin)

Naris

Yara

Sitav

Loland

Tilaj

Barrah

Abdul Nabi

Abdul Rasool

Sumuw (highness)

Al Mamlaka (the kingdom)

Malika (queen)

Mamlaka (kingdom)

Tabarak (blessed)

Nardeen

Sandy

Rama (Hindu god)

Maline

Elaine

Inar

Maliktina

Maya

Linda

Randa

Basmala (utterance of the name of God)

Jibreel (angel Gabriel)

Abdul Mu’een

Abrar

Iman

Bayan

Baseel

Wireelam

Nabi (prophet)

Nabiyya (female prophet)

Amir (prince)

Taline

Aram

Nareej

Rital

Alice

Lareen

Kibrial

Lauren

Further reading

Bombardier lands £1bn Saudi contract

Syria, the Saudi Arabia connection: The Prince with close ties to Washington at the heart of the push for war

Saudi prince tells Forbes: I'm worth more than a measly $20bn

CIA drone base in Saudi Arabia revealed

Ikea airbrushes women from its Saudi Arabia catalogue

Human rights worry at £12 billion of arms exported to repressive countries

Saudi Arabia police open fire on civilians as protests gain momentum

Saudi judge seeks spine punishment

Pervert to be beheaded and crucified in Saudi Arabia

Saudi judge says it's fine to beat wives

Saudi Arabia to execute woman for 'witchcraft'

In the name of God: the Saudi rape victim's tale 

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