Several distinguished talents and experts were granted citizenship in Saudi Arabia after a royal decree was passed on Thursday, with the identities of four more recipients revealed on Saturday.
People with “outstanding capabilities and backgrounds in ‘rare specialties,’” were awarded citizenship, the official Saudi Press Agency reported.
The kingdom will focus on naturalizing foreigners in fields including Shariah, medicine, science, culture, sports and technology, “in order to strengthen the pace of development and boost its attractiveness for investment and human capital,” the agency said.
Here are four of the latest people to be granted citizenship because of outstanding achievements in their fields:
Omar Mounes Yaghi
Omar Mounes Yaghi is a chemistry professor at the University of Berkeley, California, and was recently granted Saudi citizenship.
Born in Jordan to a Palestinian family, Yaghi pioneered a new field known as reticular chemistry.
He has been awarded numerous accolades including the Newcomb Cleveland Prize, the Albert Einstein World Award of Science, and Saudi Arabia’s King Faisal Prize.
He is also the founding director of the Berkeley Global Science Institute, which offers educational programs to people who would otherwise not have access to them.
Manahil Abdulrahman Thabet
Originally from Yemen, Manahil Thabet is an internationally-recognized mathematics and finance expert.
She is a Royal Grand Cross Officer of the Companionate of the White Swan and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine in London, UK.
In 2016 she was bestowed the prestigious honor of the Freedom of the City of London.
She is the founder and owner of financial consultancy firm Smart Tips.
Ihab Khalil is an expert in corporate finance and investment strategies, and has been a managing director and partner of management consultant giant Boston Consulting Firm for the last five years.
He studied at the American University of Beirut.
Technology expert Atif Sajid has held many leadership positions in consulting and financial services companies.
His work in the field contributed to the digital strategies of several government agencies.
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