Wednesday, 5 August 2015

A Few Updates From Saudi Arabia

Time to check in on the Saudis!

So, remember that beach in France - the one that the Saudi king went and took over? Well, apparently he's cut his visit short and beach goers now get to once again enjoy their public beach - nudists and all! No word as to why the King had to go in such a hurry.

Perhaps he went back to supervise the Haia's (Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice) new program to combat harassment against women. I'm guessing that the harrassers aren't complete strangers because women aren't really allowed to drive, dress how they like, go out alone...

No wait! They can go out in groups now!
Several Saudi businesswomen started traveling with a group of friends after recent regulations which allow women to travel without their mahram.

These women said they find great fun to travel as a group with their friends and their children, where they can achieve their goals of travel.
Baby steps, right?

Meanwhile, the Saudis have been calling on the international community to ban any sort of blasphemy. This is all in the interest of freedom of religion!
"We have made it clear that freedom of expression without limits or restrictions would lead to violation and abuse of religious and ideological rights," said Abdulmajeed Al-Omari, director for external relations at the Ministry of Islamic Affairs.

"This requires everyone to intensify efforts to criminalize insulting heavenly religions, prophets, holy books, religious symbols and places of worship," he added.
They are very concerned about intolerance.
Addressing an international symposium on media coverage of religious symbols based on international law, which started in this French city on Saturday, a senior Saudi official said the Kingdom emphasized years ago that the international community must act urgently to confront ethnic, religious and cultural intolerance, which has become widespread in all communities and peoples of the world.
This makes sense, because this same Saudi government seems much more interested in the rights of religion or culture than the rights of actual people.

Speaking of intolerance and blasphemy, the Indonesian government is thrilled this week that some of their pilgrims visiting Saudi Arabia will be released early.
The Indonesian mission is hopeful detained Indonesian pilgrims will be free “very soon.” The mission is trying to persuade Saudi authorities of their nationals’ innocence.

Eleven Indonesian pilgrims, who arrived in the holy city of Makkah to perform Umrah, were detained on religious charges of practicing “shirk” (associating partners with God) and performing Eid Al-Fitr prayers on July 18, a day after the beginning of Eid Al-Fitr here on July 17, Syarif Shahab, information secretary at the Indonesian Consulate in Jeddah, told Arab News on Monday.

“The consulate is working closely with the Saudi authorities for the release of Indonesia’s nationals and we are now hopeful that they will be released very soon,” Shahab said.

He revealed that they were detained for practicing religious activities and rituals which are not correct.
I'm so thrilled to see that the rights of the religion not to be blasphemed against or incorrectly practiced are once again being defended in Saudi Arabia.

(Image source)

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