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.
According to Gulf News, parents in the Kingdom will reportedly no longer be able to call their children by names such as Linda, Alice, Abrar, Maya, Abdul Naser or Binyamin (Arabic for Benjamin) after the civil affairs department at the ministry issued a list of the prohibited names.
“Names such as Abdul Naser and Binyamin are not found to be particularly offensive to Muslims. Binyamin is believed in Islam to be the son of Prophet Jacob (Yaqoub) (PBUH) and the full brother of Prophet Joseph (PBUH), but it also happens to be the name of the Israeli prime minister. Abdul Naser, similarly, is the name of the famous Arab nationalist ruler of Egypt, who was at odds with Saudi Arabia,” says the Gulf News report.
Abdul in Arabic means “worshipper of” or “slave of”, while Nabi means “prophet” and Rasool means “messenger”. Those who oppose such names argue that Abdul means “worshipper of’ and is therefore forbidden as only God can be worshipped.
Following are the names banned by the kingdom:
Binyamin (Arabic for Benjamin)
Al Mamlaka (the kingdom)
Rama (Hindu god)
Basmala (utterance of the name of God)
Jibreel (angel Gabriel)
Nabiyya (female prophet)