The New Arab Logo

Breaking News
Saudi woman gets death threats... for wearing a dress Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Saudi woman gets death threats... for wearing a dress

Shehri has also garnered much praise for her brave move [Twitter]

Date of publication: 30 November, 2016

Share this page:
  • 0

  • twitter
A Saudi woman received death threats and had to deactivate her social media account for merely walking the streets of Riyadh in a dress, not an abaya.
A Saudi woman has caused a stir in the deeply conservative country after a picture emerged online of her walking in the streets of the capital Riyadh not wearing traditional clothing.

The image of Malak al-Shehri, who goes by the online moniker Angel, dressed in a colourful shin-length dress and a black winter jacket went viral on Tuesday, prompting death threats from some ultra-orthodox social media users.

What was Shehri's heinous crime? Leaving the house not dressed in an abaya, the traditional black robe all women must wear in Saudi Arabia, and not covering her hair with a hijab.

What was Shehri's heinous crime? Leaving the house not dressed in an abaya, the traditional black robe all women must wear in Saudi Arabia, and not covering her hair with a hijab

The Arabic-language hashtag translated as "We demand the arrest of the rebel Angel Shehri" gained traction on Twitter soon after the online activist shared the daring image.

"Kill her and then throw her body to the dogs," said one user, "We want blood," said another.

Shehri closed her Twitter account following the introduction of the hashtag calling for her arrest and the multiple death threats.

In Saudi society, it is seen as more "improper" for women to leave the house in brightly coloured clothing than choosing to go out with their hair or face exposed.

Shehri has also garnered much praise from the majority of people for her brave move to challenge Saudi social norms and the constraints imposed on women.

Translation: "Angel Shehri hasn't done anything wrong she has just gone back to the days before the Islamic Awakening, which destroyed our society. You all should thank her."

In September, tens of thousands of women from the kingdom took to Twitter to voice their opposition to the country's paternalistic practice of male guardianship.

The campaign came after Human Rights Watch released a report about how Saudi women were "boxed in" by laws which require them to seek the approval of a male guardian for the most simple transactions and activities, including travel, renewing a passport or going to work.

The New ArabComments

Most Popular

Most Popular

    Read More