Saudi cops ar­rest young woman for re­mov­ing abaya

Kuwait Times - - FRONT PAGE -

RIYADH: Po­lice in the Saudi cap­i­tal said yes­ter­day they had ar­rested a woman for tak­ing off her veil in pub­lic and post­ing pic­tures of her dar­ing ac­tion on Twit­ter. Po­lice spokesman Fawaz Al-Maiman did not name the young woman, but sev­eral web­sites iden­ti­fied her as Malak Al-Shehri, who trig­gered a huge back­lash on so­cial me­dia af­ter pos­ing with­out the hi­jab in a main Riyadh street last month. “Po­lice of­fi­cers have de­tained a girl who had re­moved her abaya, im­ple­ment­ing a chal­lenge she an­nounced on so­cial me­dia sev­eral days ago,” Maiman said.

He said in a state­ment that the po­lice in the ul­tra­con­ser­va­tive king­dom acted in line with their duty to mon­i­tor “vi­o­la­tions of gen­eral morals”. He said the woman posted a tweet of her­self stand­ing next to a pop­u­lar Riyadh cafe on Al-Tahliya Street but with­out wear­ing the Is­lamic head­scarf that is re­quired in Saudi so­ci­ety. The woman, in her 20s, was taken to prison, he said, also ac­cus­ing her of “speak­ing openly about pro­hib­ited re­la­tions with (non-re­lated) men”. “Riyadh po­lice stress that the ac­tion of this woman vi­o­lates the laws ap­plied in this coun­try,” Maiman said, urg­ing the pub­lic to “ad­here to the teach­ings of Is­lam”.

The news web­site said the woman had posted on Twit­ter that she would go out in pub­lic with­out her abaya. —

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