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Three Saudi youths arrested after Pokemon hunt at airport

The youths were arrested while chasing the digital critters in the vicinity of the airport mosque at the King Abdullah Airport in Jazan

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Security authorities at a southwestern Saudi airport have arrested three youths who trespassed into airport property while playing Pokemon Go.

The youths were arrested while chasing the digital critters in the vicinity of the airport mosque at the King Abdullah Airport in Jazan, and handed over to local police to complete the investigations, al-Riyadh daily reported, quoting an airport source.

The young men were from a remote mountainous region and they reportedly traveled a distance of 70 kilometers hunting the monsters after they downloaded the mobile app.

Saudis have not been immune to the addictive augmented-reality mobile game that has created a global frenzy, tasking players to roam the real world catching cartoon monsters.

On Thursday, the kingdom denied that its top clerical body had renewed a 15-year-old edict declaring that the Pokemon game was un-Islamic.

Saudi media reports said on Wednesday the General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Religious Scholars had revived a 2001 decree against a Pokemon card game in response to queries from Muslims, although it made no mention of the new mobile game.


This article is adapted from a story published in the Saudi Gazette on July 22, 2016.