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Saudi official clarifies that public decency laws are yet to be enforced

Saudi official clarifies that public decency laws are yet to be enforced

Media reports had stated that the 10 rules took effect in the kingdom on Saturday

Saudi Arabia has not yet implemented its recently announced public decency laws, an official from the kingdom’s ministry of Interior has clarified.

Local media had reported that the regulations took effect on Saturday, adding that those found breaking any of 10 new rules could face fines of up to SAR5,000 ($1,333).

The new regulations were reportedly approved by the Saudi Cabinet last month, and are aimed at upholding the values, principles and identity of Saudi society in public places such as parks, beaches, malls, hotels and restaurants.

However, an official source at the ministry said the implementation of the regulations are still being studied by the concerned authorities, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Monday.

The date of implementation will be announced after procedures to enforce the decision are completed, the source added.

According to local media, the rules cover aspects such as dressing respectfully, avoiding taking photos or using phrases that might offend public decency, and refraining from creating graffiti and demolishing public property or transport unless authorised by Saudi authorities.

Verbal and physical acts of violence or actions that cause damage, fear or are considered to be a threat to public safety, are also in the list.

Each of the 10 regulations will carry a corresponding fine, according to reports.

Saudi’s interior minister will work with the chairman of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) and other relevant authorities to administer and enforce the rules.

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