Oman laws reflect the fact that it is an Islamic country. Local traditions, customs, laws and religions shall be respected at all times and it is important to be aware of your actions to ensure that they don’t offend.
The new Oman Penal Code, promulgated by the Royal Decree No. 7/2018, came into effect recently with new punishments for various offences. To start you off, here are 6 things you’ll need to need to watch out for:
1. Expired food products
In accordance with Article (380) of the new Oman Penal Code, individuals or institutions, accused of producing, manufacturing, offering, selling, storing, transferring, marketing, possessing for selling purpose or promoting any expired food products could face an imprisonment for a term of not less than (6) months and not more than (3) years. If the action caused a death, the punishment shall be for a term not shorter than (10) years and not longer than (15) years.
Article (115) of the new Oman Penal Code brought an imprisonment punishment against anyone intentionally disseminating false news, rumors at home or abroad that will undermine the prestige of the state or hurt confidence in financial markets and affect the financial position, for a term of not less than (3) months and not more than (3) years.
3. Religious matters
Article (269) of the new Oman Penal Code provided for an imprisonment punishment for not less than (3) years and not more than (10) years against anyone transgressing against the God either by words, writing, drawing, gesture, or by any other means, or against prophets, the Holy Quran, the Islamic religion or other heavenly religions.
4. Obstruction of traffic
In line with Article (112) of the new Oman Penal Code, a person who intentionally tries to disrupt the passage of ambulance or public security vehicles will face not less than (7) years imprisonment.
5. Duty of care to minors
The new Oman Penal Code as well stipulates imprisonment for a period of not less than (10) days, and not exceeding (6) months, a fine of not less than OMR100, and not exceeding OMR500 or one of these two penalties for persons who have the care of a child who has not completed 18 years of age, or is responsible for a person who is not capable to care for himself due to his physical or mental condition, and abstains from caring for them, neglects or ignores his responsibilities.
6. State security
Finally, in line with Article (128) of the new Oman Penal Code, any individual who facilitates the enemy to enter into the country or assists the enemies by providing information to them or guiding them will face a death penalty.
It is important to highlight the fact that Article (2) of the new Oman Penal Code cancels the previous regulation issued by Royal Decree No. 7/1974 and all that contradicts this (new) law or contravenes its provisions. The new Oman Penal Code is comprehensive and aims to protect both individual rights as well as national interests.