Arrest by Haia ‘can divide families’

Updated 03 February 2015
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Arrest by Haia ‘can divide families’

Being held by the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (Haia) is not only hard on perpetrators of moral violations, but can also severely affect their families, especially if women are involved.
There is a significant possibility that some family members may take it upon themselves to mete out their own violent punishment against women relatives caught for moral violations, even killing them.
A source at the Haia said the organization makes every effort not to publicly reveal the identities of those caught participating in sinful acts. However, if a woman is detained then the Haia calls a brother, rather than her father or husband.
“We try to break the news gradually so that the person is not shocked and decides to act harshly against the woman,” the source added.
He said the Haia does not use the name of a perpetrator’s family in official documents and investigation records. This is to prevent families from facing public ridicule and condemnation. He said a distinction is drawn between minor, once-off mistakes, and much serious offenses such as prostitution.
Abdul Rahman Al-Zunaidi, a professor in the Islamic culture department at Imam Muhammad bin Saud University, said parents may feel that the family has been dishonored if their child is held for a moral offense.
“Parents consider it a disaster that damages their honor as Muslims and Arabs. They have to deal with feelings of jealousy, pride and shame.” Al-Zunaidi said that parents or other family members could then kill the person, which is an even greater sin.
He said Islam forbids a man, where a brother or father, from killing a woman member of the family. Muslims are required to act in a rational manner, and “not solve one mistake with another.”
He said male members of a family must try to look at what caused the behavior of the female member of their family. They might then find that there are other solutions to the problem. Violence does not solve problems, he said.
Mansour Al-Askar, a sociologist at King Saud University, said that people must start becoming aware of the changes in the behavior of young people.
He said the globalization of culture, the revolution in communications and lack of religious education have all had an effect on the youth in this country.
Some children have also been raised in difficult circumstances. This has led to some breaking away from the traditions of their parents and seen increasing misunderstanding between them.


Saudi ministry: More than 3 million Umrah visas issued so far

The Vision 2030 reform plan aims to attract more than 30 million Umrah pilgrims, and provide them with excellent services and an outstanding experience. (SPA)
Updated 20 January 2019
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Saudi ministry: More than 3 million Umrah visas issued so far

  • Developing Hajj and Umrah organizations and services in the Kingdom is among the top priorities of the Saudi government

JEDDAH: The number of Umrah visas issued this year has reached 3,024,272, of which 2,561,541 pilgrims have arrived in the Kingdom, according to data provided by the Hajj and Umrah Ministry.
There are 399,479 pilgrims still in the Kingdom, with 277,372 in Makkah and 122,107 in Madinah.
Most pilgrims — 2,288,789 — came to the Kingdom by air, while 257,266 entered by land and 15,486 arrived by sea.
The largest number of pilgrims are from Pakistan (681,392) followed by Indonesia (447,450), India (306,470), Yemen (146,067), Malaysia (142,290), Algeria (92,752), Turkey (86,925), Egypt (85,438), Bangladesh (53,131) and the UAE (62,927).
The weekly data also included the number of Saudi staff within Umrah companies and institutions. They are 9,983 Saudis including 8,259 males and 1,724 females.
Developing Hajj and Umrah organizations and services in the Kingdom is among the top priorities of the Saudi government.
The Vision 2030 reform plan aims to attract more than 30 million Umrah pilgrims, and provide them with excellent services and an outstanding experience.