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Thursday, May 30, 2024  
21 Dhul-Qadah 1445  

Saudi Arabia decides to name people charged with sexual harassment

Punishment includes up to two years in prison and SAR100,000 fine

Saudi Arabia’s government has has decided to begin naming people arrested for sexual harassment, in a bid to shame sexual offenders.

The Mecca police have announced the arrest of an Egyptian individual accused of harassing a woman. The police disclosed the full name of the suspect in an official press statement.

In another case in Jeddah, police stated the arrest of a Saudi man for sexual harassment, sharing his complete name. 

Police shared that the offenders in both cases were referred to prosecutors.

In recent years, Saudi authorities have been empowering women and boosting their rights by combating these challenges. 

In Saudi Arabia, sexual harassment is punishable by up to two years in prison and a maximum fine of SAR100,000. 

Punishments can be intensified to up to five years in prison and a fine of SR300,000 in case of repetition or an act is committed in public.

Saudi authorities have emphasized that the legal repercussions for sexual harassment are permanent and cannot be reversed, regardless of whether the victim chooses to renounce their rights or refrain from filing a formal complaint.

If harassment is done with a child, person with special needs, or person in sleep or unconscious state, punishment includes up to five years in prison and a maximum fine of SAR300,000. 

“In the crime of harassment, the victim’s renunciation of their own rights or failure to file a complaint does not deny the competent agencies the right to take the legal action they deem necessary to serve the common good,” the Saudi Human Rights Commission said.

The commission defined harassment as any verbal expression, deed, or action containing a sexual indication made by an individual towards another person, bullying another person’s body, or disrespect in any way, even through modern technology.

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