Women arrested for ‘satanic practices’ in Kuwait
A group of women were arrested in Kuwait for appearing in a video wearing satanic make-up and drinking a blood-like liquid, according to local media sources.
The Kuwaiti Anti-Human Trafficking Department received a report that the women were conducting "satanic practices" during an "orgy" at an apartment in Abu Halifa.
The women had “terrifying teeth and [were] drinking a liquid similar to blood” in the video, reported Gulf News.
They were “driven by false beliefs,” said local reports, breaking religious customs and using magic and witchcraft.
The Criminal Investigation Department in Kuwait has launched an investigation into the incident.
The arrest follows a string of episodes involving women in the Middle East and North Africa being penalised for their behaviour online.
In Egypt, five women TikTok influencers were convicted of human trafficking on Sunday and sentenced to at least six years in prison.
The women were charged because of content they posted on the social media app.
A nationwide online movement has taken place in Kuwait to try to reclaim virtual spaces and challenge conservative norms.
A social media campaign prompted by popular fashion blogger Ascia Al Faraj - who uploaded an explosive video addressing issues of harassment in the country - encouraged dozens of testimonies from women to share their own experiences on an Instagram account called "Lan Asket", Arabic for "I will not be silent".
The women who participated talked about being stalked, arrested and harassed.
"Until MENA governments cease to promote a culture of victim-blaming, police women's bodies and behaviours, prosecute women for exercising their human rights and prioritise women’s rights, violence will remain a daily reality for many women and girls across the region," said Sara Hashash, Middle East and North Africa Media Manager at Amnesty International to The New Arab.