Niqabi Woman Arrested for Twerking at Riyadh Concert Despite Saudi’s 'Reform' Bid

Published October 30th, 2019 - 07:57 GMT

A video of a Saudi girl in a niqab dancing amid a mixed-gender crowd at a concert in Riyadh went viral on social media. The incident sparked a massive controversy in the ultra-conservative kingdom. 

The video shows men and women, surrounding the girl who as she danced in a manner that could be considered unusual in Saudi society. 

The young woman has since been arrested and accused of "disrupting social etiquette" after the viral video showed her dancing in the traditional black abaya and niqab covering her face.

Translation: “Urgent... The Attorney General of Saudi Arabia announced the arrest of a girl who breached the kingdom’s public decency at an event in Riyadh.”

It is unclear whether the woman will receive a fine, a prison sentence or worse, though Saudi authorities warned they would issue fines for a number of public decency offences for tourists visiting the country, including immodest dress and public displays of affection.

Violations listed include littering, spitting, queue jumping, taking photographs and videos of people without permission and playing music at prayer times, the interior ministry said.

Those caught violating the law could face fines ranging from 50 riyals ($13) to 6,000 riyals ($1,600).

The mixed-gender concert took place during the kingdom's Riyadh Season festival, running from October to December as part of the kingdom's latest projects to increase income and tourism.

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