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Sun Dec 25, 2016, 09:27 AM


Your App Isn't Helping The People Of Saudi Arabia

Felix Biederman
Thursday 3:15pm

On March 15, 2002, 15 Saudi girls burned to death inside their school in Mecca. They were not trapped by fallen debris, or unaccounted for by firefighters. The mutaween, Saudi Arabia’s religious police, would not allow the girls to leave their burning school because they were not covering their hair or wearing their abayas.

The mutaween’s job is to root out violations of Saudi Arabia’s strict interpretation of Islam. As such, their ranks attract fanatics who live to tell others what to do, even when those others are schoolgirls trapped in a burning building.

Fourteen years after 15 children were needlessly incinerated, the mutaween have had their wings clipped just a tad. They can still harass women, unmarried couples, LGBT people and anyone else who violates the social tenets of Wahhabism, or simply look like they’re ripe for abuse or extortion. But they can no longer detain people, nor can they interfere with firefighters.

The most powerful absolute monarchy on earth is signaling that they’re going to make a few changes.



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