Saudi arrests Egyptian man over breakfast with female colleague, video sparks controversy

Leroy Wright
September 13, 2018

The girl, draped head to toe in Islamic niqab, is seen waving to the camera and eating breakfast.

In the past few years, Saudi women have acquired several new rights, including the right to vote in all elections and be elected for political office, the right to access government services such as healthcare and education without a guardian's consent and more recently, the right to drive.

The man has been arrested under charges of "violation of the women working conditions".

An Egyptian man working for a multinational company in Jeddah was arrested for appearing in the video after he made a decision to upload the video on social media.

Saudi authorities have arrested an Arab man who appeared in video having breakfast with a female work colleague. In the 30-second video posted on Twitter, the man jokes about eating breakfast together with nobody else there. What seems to have enraged people more is the fact that the woman can be seen feeding the man.

Saudi Authorities say the video is offensive and arrested the man who is of Egyptian Nationality after the video went viral on social media.

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The ministry talked about the resort proprietor had been summoned for failing to adhere to authorities regulations that stipulate a gender-segregated workplace.

But many people in Egypt reacted with surprise at the outcry from Saudi Arabia and wonder how anyone could be arrested for such an innocuous video.

Some even said the woman should have been arrested too.

Later, a statement was also issued by the public prosecutor urging foreigners to abide by the kingdom's laws and respect its values and traditions.

The incident comes in the midst of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's far-reaching reforms that have ended decades-long bans on women driving and cinemas.

The backlash underscores the challenges facing the prince as he seeks to modernise a country steeped in conservatism.

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