Jeddah Gets Replica Statue of Liberty but What About, Um, Liberty?

Published July 7th, 2019 - 07:16 GMT

A replica of the popular Statue of Liberty of New York is now in the Saudi coastal city of Jeddah. Most Saudis are not happy about it.

On Wednesday night, the Statue appeared on the Jeddah waterfront beach alongside Elvis Presley, the Las Vegas welcome sign and the Hollywood sign.

Photos of the installations went viral on the internet among Saudis before officials went to the media to confirm the installations were part of the annual “Jeddah Season” where several cultures are being celebrated.

However, the American replicas were installed in time for the 4 July US Independence Day and called “Las Fallas”, in reference to the Valencian festival to herald the arrival of spring.

Meanwhile, not all Saudis were happy about the festival's decision.

Those with strong religious opinion, mostly followers of Saudi Wahhabism, considered the installations as a form of idolatry and therefore to be forbidden despite the loosening restrictions toward modesty and more open culture.


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