Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens going to Saudi Arabia for WWE show

May 13, 2023 - by Colin Vassallo

The announcement of the Undisputed WWE Tag Team title match between Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn against Roman Reigns and Solo Sikoa at the upcoming Night of Champions premium live event in Saudi Arabia caught a lot of fans by surprise.

Sami Zayn, who is of Syrian descent and a Muslim, was previously banned from entering Saudi Arabia as the country did not have any diplomatic relationship with Syria. Zayn later did not want to entertain the idea of going to Saudi for any WWE shows.

His tag team partner Kevin Owens also refused to go to Saudi in the past, in part due to his friendship with Zayn. Owens only participated in one Saudi event, the first one titled The Greatest Royal Rumble, and never went again. When the Khashoggi murder took place in 2018, many WWE Superstars, including John Cena and Daniel Bryan at the time, refused to travel to the show and were replaced as well.

But just a few days ago, Saudi Arabia and Syria announced that they have resumed the work of diplomatic missions in both countries. This is after more than 10 years since Saudi cut ties with Syria over the Syrian government’s handling of its civil war. That might have helped sway Zayn’s decision to go over and do the show.

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia decided to resume the work of its diplomatic mission in the Syrian Arab Republic,” the state-run Saudi Press Agency reported Tuesday according to CNN. The announcement came two days after Syria was readmitted into the Arab League.

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