Photographing women a punishable crime

Updated 19 March 2016

Photographing women a punishable crime

JEDDAH: A number of citizens have expressed their annoyance over the increasing phenomenon of taking photos of women during festivals and events in a number of provinces and governorates.
They pointed out that this is an action that exposes women, and called on the relevant authorities and festival administrators to impose a ban on taking photos of female visitors, and for violators to be held accountable.
A citizen asked Islamic scholar Sheikh Khaled bin Abdullah Al-Musleh about the Shariah opinion on taking photos of women without their knowledge during festivals and other events, and publishing these photos on social media websites. He said that this action is prohibited by Shariah law.
He also said that taking photos of people without their knowledge is prohibited and is considered a criminal act. Rules and laws criminalize this action and impose deterrent action against anyone who takes part in a such an activity.
He said spying on people is prohibited in the Qur’an and Sunnah, because it spreads rumors and immorality in the community, which is a punishable act in this life and the Hereafter.
He pointed out that taking photos of women without their knowledge instills doubt and suspicions in the minds of the spouses of these women, not to mention the fact that people don’t like photos of their wives to be published for everyone to see.
Lawyer and legal adviser Abdul Karim Al-Qadi said that this action is punishable by law, and that the exact punishment is left to the judge.
He said that everyone who has been exposed to this action has the right to file a complaint with the criminal court against the photographer.

Saudi Arabia eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions

Updated 26 May 2020

Saudi Arabia eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions

  • Curfew to be eased on Sunday, except in Makkah, as domestic travel permitted
  • All curfews in Saudi Arabia to be lifted by June 20

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia announced the easing of restrictions that has halted much of the activity in the country due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As of Sunday 31, May, the curfew on all areas of the Kingdom will be eased, except Makkah. Movement in cities and within the regions of the country will again be permitted, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Tuesday.

The easing will mean the Kingdom’s 24-hour lockdown is relaxed with a curfew from 3 p.m to 6 a.m until Sunday, after which the hours will change to 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.. Makkah will remain under a full 24-hour lockdown.

On June 21, all curfews in the Kingdom will be lifted and prayers at Makkah’s mosque will be permitted.

Before then, social distancing guidelines must continue to be adhered to and gatherings of more than 50 people will continue to be banned.

Authorities have also allowed the attendance at ministries, government agencies and private sector companies, and the return of their office activities.

Some economic and commercial activities will also be allowed to take place including those at wholesale and retail shops, as well as malls. Cafes will be permitted to operate once more.

However, all job sectors where social distancing rules are harder to achieve such as beauty salons, barbershops, sports and health clubs, recreational centers and cinemas will remain closed.

Umrah pilgrimage and international flights will continue to be suspended until further notice.

The new rules are subject to constant evaluation at the health ministry and can be changed if the situation warrants it.

Earlier, Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah, the health minister, said: “The phases start gradually until we return to normalcy, with its new concept based on social distancing.” 

He added that the precautionary steps taken by the Kingdom early in the outbreak helped to limit the spread of the virus. 

Now, he said, the ministry has developed a plan for the next phase that relies on two main factors: The capacity of the health care system to cope with critical cases, and the expansion of testing to identify new infections as soon as possible.

Reassuring the Saudi nation on Monday, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said: “The bad conditions will pass, God willing, and we are heading toward the good, God willing.” 

The Kingdom recorded 2,235 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, taking the total to 74,795, and the death toll rose by nine to 399. Worldwide the virus has infected more than 5.5 million people and killed nearly 350,000.