Saudi Shoura Council approves anti-harassment law

Violators face a fine of up to $80,000



Saudi Arabia’s consultative Shoura Council on Monday approved draft legislation criminalising harassment.

The law comprises eight articles to combat harassment, prevent it from occurring, punish the perpetrators and protect the victim’s privacy, dignity and personal freedom, according to a statement to Saudi Press Agency.

It has been created because of the “negative effects on the individual, the family and society” harassment can have.

Anyone convicted under the new law faces a fine of up to SAR300,000 ($80,000).

Shoura member Hoda Al-Helaissi told Arab News she expected the law to be of particular importance as women in the kingdom prepare to drive next month.

Saudi Arabia will officially lift its female driving ban on June 24.

Read: Saudi says ready to lift female driving ban next month

“The timing is important. Driving, although probably the main reason for it, is not the only one,” she was quoted as saying.

“Any comprehensive society needs a law such as this one to protect the rights of all citizens, regardless of gender.”