Freedom to choose religion is one of the rights guaranteed by Islamic Shariah. Allah said in the Quran: "There is no compulsion in religion. The right path has been distinguished from error" (Surat Al-Baqarah, verse no. 256). Islamic Shariah enjoins us to treat all men justly apart from their religion, race or colour. Allah said in the Quran: "Allah commands you to render trusts to whom they are due and when you judge between people to judge with justice" (Surat An-Nisaa, verse no. 58) and said "…and do not let the hatred of a people prevent you from being just. Be just; that is nearer to righteousness" (Surat Al-Ma'idah, verse no. 8). In effect, Article 8 of the Basic Law of Governance stipulates: "The system of government in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is established on the foundation of justice, Shura (consultation) and equality in compliance with Islamic Shariah". Governance in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia shall be based on justice, consultation and equality in accordance with Islamic Shariah."
The Kingdom is the destination of the entire Islamic world with its population of more than one and a half billion Muslims. Every year, millions of Muslims visit the Kingdom to perform Hajj and Umrah. All citizens of the Kingdom are Muslims. All non-Muslims arriving in the Kingdom for purposes of business or work do so on the basis of fixed-term contracts. Article (41) of the Basic Law of Governance stipulates: "Foreign residents in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia shall abide by its laws and shall show respect for the values, traditions and sensibilities of the Saudi society". This has become generally understood and has become an incentive towards further cooperation. Non-Muslims are guaranteed freedom of worship in law and in practice, in their own special places. Instructions and regulations have been circulated to all the relevant State agencies permitting non-Muslim residents to exercise their right to worship in their own homes and within the premises of diplomatic missions. Furthermore, housing compounds have been arranged to enable non-Muslim residents to hold religious services. Article (37) of the Basic Law of Governance states that "Residences shall be inviolable, and they may not be entered or searched without their owner's permission except in cases set forth in the Law." The same principle is confirmed in the Law of Criminal Procedure, which states in Article (41): "A criminal investigation officer may not enter or search any inhabited place except in the cases provided for in the laws, pursuant to a reasoned order issued by the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution".
With regard to the right of parents and guardians to raise their children according to religious and moral principles, Islamic Shariah is distinguished from all other laws by deeming such upbringing as a duty of Muslim parents and guardians, not only as their right. This is consistent with the principle of "the best interest of the child". As for non-Muslim parents and guardians, they retain this right based on Shariah, in light of the Quranic verse "There is no compulsion in religion" (Surat Al-Baqarah, verse no. 256). However, if it turns out that the child is subjected to any kind of harm on grounds of parenting, or if he/she is exploited or pushed to disturb public order or otherwise, the relevant laws of the Kingdom, such as the Protection from Abuse Law, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Law and the Child Protection Law, address such harm and ensure the protection of the child and hold the offender accountable.