Well, our government has annoyed another dictatorship, and that regime has retaliated against visa seekers.
The Saudi regime has taken issue with the Canadian policy of taking weeks and sometimes even months to grant visas to Saudi subjects. So as of 01 September 2011 they are changing their processing time from the usual 24 hours to an astonishing four to six (4-6) weeks. Yes, you read it here first: the Saudi Embassy in Canada will hold Canadian passports for an average of one month before issuing a visa.
Now in my opinion a country wracked with religious issues, and religious police who execute two people per week, and high numbers of under-employed indoctrinated young men needs to be watched very carefully. It is the duty and obligation of the Canadian government to scrutinize all Saudi applicants. After all, it is not Belgians committing atrocities against Western nationals in the name of their god.
Despite the inconvenience it will cause to some Canadian businessmen and oil workers, I encourage our often spineless tory government in Ottawa to keep standards in place and to not cave into the house of Saud on this one.
Click here for Saudi visa details.