Islamic Police Arrest Saudi Man Giving Out Free Hugs

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


Saudi arrested giving free hugs

Free hugs are Unislamic. There is no hugging in Islam.

A man who decided to offer ‘free hugs’ in Saudi Arabia’s capital Riyadh has been arrested by the state’s religious police.

Abdulrahman al-Khayyal went out onto the streets along with a friend carrying a placard saying ‘free hugs’, apparently inspired by a viral video of a campaign posted on YouTube earlier this week.

In that video Bandr al-Swed was filmed hugging young men, in a three minute clip that racked up over a million views in three days.

Inspired by the cuddling campaign, 21-year-old Al-Khayyal announced on Twitter that he was going to offer free hugs in Tahliya, one of the main shopping streets.

However the two men were arrested and their ‘free hugs’ banners seized, CNN Arabic reported.

Members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice arrested the two men in Riyadh for violating local laws and engaging in “exotic practices”, Al Hayat newspaper said. They were then made to sign a pledge that they would not go out again.

The religious police in Saudi Arabia are tasked with enforcing the government’s Sharia law.

They are also known as the Mutaween and empowered to stop unrelated men and women socialising with each other, as well as any homosexual activity and prostitution. They enforce strict Islamic dress codes and dietary rules.

They have come under heavy criticism in the past, most notably in March 2002, when they prevented schoolgirls from escaping a burning school in Mecca because they were not wearing headscarves and abayas (black robes) and accompanied by a male guardian. Fifteen girls died and 50 were injured as a result.

If you’re willing to burn teenage girls to death because they’re covered up enough, then you’re really not going to be on board with hugs.

  • Veracious_one

    Happiness is Un-Islamic….

  • Veracious_one

    Happiness is Un-Islamic….

  • Biff Henderson

    Don’t you know thugs don’t hug?

  • Biff Henderson

    Don’t you know thugs don’t hug?

  • defcon 4

    So men can hold hands publicly, but no one can hug?

  • defcon 4

    So men can hold hands publicly, but no one can hug?

  • http://pislamonauseacentral.blogspot.com/ Gary Rumain

    Shouldn’t the very last sentence read:

    If you’re willing to burn teenage girls to death because they’re not covered up enough, then you’re really not going to be on board with hugs?

  • http://pislamonauseacentral.blogspot.com/ Gary Rumain

    Shouldn’t the very last sentence read:

    If you’re willing to burn teenage girls to death because they’re not covered up enough, then you’re really not going to be on board with hugs?

  • pupsncats

    Is this any more ridiculous than the PC rules of our leftists?

  • pupsncats

    Is this any more ridiculous than the PC rules of our leftists?