An outcry from Jordanian tour operators has compelled Amman to backtrack on a controversial new regulation that was intended to limit the entry of single eastern European and North African women into the country. Tour operators throughout the country were notified earlier this week of a new visa regulation issued by Jordan’s Ministry of Interior. The directive stipulated that women traveling alone to Jordan from several eastern European and North African countries would be required to obtain special entry visas.

The ministry notice gave no reason for the new regulation. But tour operators said the conservative government was trying to clamp down on the growing trend of prostitution in Jordan imported by women from these countries.

Source: [The Media Line]

Phew! What were they thinking? I’m glad that if my Moroccan friend Soumia or my Tunisian pal Leilouta ever decided to visit Jordan — on their own — they won’t need a "special entry" visa.

It reminds me of my attempt to get a visa to Dubai from Doha, Qatar a few years ago. I went there with Jeff, but for some reason did not mention that I was married. I just simply requested a visa. The woman in charge of visas at the embassy gave me a hard time, asking me to do a tedious amount of paper work that really baffled me.

However, when I mentioned my husband and pointed to him, she told me: "You should have told me you are married to the American. You can pick up your visa tomorrow." I was later told that Arab single women (along with few other nationalities) applying for a visa to the Emirates usually face some "special" restrictions. The logical explanation I was give for this was the country’s quest to curb prostitution.

I guess somehow being married or maybe being married to "the American" made me much less likely to spread moral corruption. Dangerous, dangerous me!