Saudi Arabia’s Directorate for Combating Extremism has outlawed feminism in the absolute monarchy terming it as an unacceptable extremist idea.
The organ headed by the state security agency, through an animated video posted on their verified twitter page, banned feminism in the country alongside other eight forms of activism perceived as extremism.
Atonement, homosexuality, pornography and takfir – the Islamist militant practice of labeling followers of other schools of Islam unbelievers are also categorized as extremist ideas.
Homosexuality alongside atheism are punishable by death have been loutlawed in Saudi Arabia.
The state security organ claimed that extremism is a societal scourge, a source of persistent trouble that causes destruction.
Anyone who speaks of the said ideas including seeking to eliminate gender differences in the country will face the law under the crimes and penalties related to extremist ideas.
“Don’t forget that excess of anything at the expense of the homeland is considered extremism,” said the promo’s voice-over.
The proprietors of the outlawed concepts will be charged by the Public Prosecution before being referred to the Judiciary, lawyer Nawaf Al-vegeti told AlwatanSA, a local daily in the country.
Nawaf said “the punishments for such crimes are reinforcing, which are at the discretion of the judge. The sanctions will be very heavy because they are classified by the organ of the State Security.”
If found guilty, one may face “imprisonment, (jail term which has not been specified) and a fine.” The penalty may even amount to flogging, as deemed by the judge.
The prosecutor may level an additional crimes against the accused, which is to arouse public opinion and incitement.
A case in point is when a feminist uses social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook bearing in mind that feminism is listed as extremist ideology thus the adoption of this thought is a crime while arousing public opinion is another crime.
It is not the first time since the Saudi authority cracks a whip on feminists after women’s rights advocates were detained for protesting against the ban on women driving which was lofted last year.
Diplomats speculated that the move was an indicator of the government’s imminent reform on the extremism law.