DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — One of the seven sheikhdoms in the United Arab Emirates said Tuesday it will allow “gaming” while announcing a multibillion-dollar deal with casino giant Wynn Resorts.
The announcement by Ras al-Khaimah comes after months of rumors about gambling coming to the UAE, home to skyscraper-studded Dubai and oil-rich Abu Dhabi. Islam, the religion of the Arabian Peninsula, prohibits gambling.
While the other emirates haven't announced similar deals, casino operator Caesars Palace operates a massive resort already in Dubai.
Initially, a statement issued by Wynn Resorts and Ras al-Khaimah authorities only referred to “gaming,” without elaborating. The emirate's Tourism Development Authority repeatedly declined to answer questions from The Associated Press on whether “gaming” involved cash betting.
Las Vegas-based Wynn Resorts, which also operates the Encore Boston Harbor in Everett, did not immediately respond to questions from the AP. Wynn stock traded at $84.80 at the close of business Monday on the NASDAQ stock exchange.