Saudi arrests Jordanians for 'pleasure unions'

Defendants considered them legitimate unions


Saudi Arabia’s religious police arrested a Jordanian woman residing in Jeddah for arranging pleasure marriages and facilitating meetings between the opposite sex, local press reported Wednesday.

The Commission for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice stormed the woman's house after receiving reports about her alleged activities. Informants said she facilitated meetings between men and women under the pretext of arranging pleasure marriages, reported the Saudi newspaper Shams.

Such unions do not meet the requirements of a legitimate marriage contract in Saudi Arabia, which include having a marriage registrar and witnesses.

Three other women and a man were also arrested and confessed under interrogation, but refused to describe the activities as illegitimate.

According to statements by the accused, they were justly involved in the facilitation of a type of marriage, which is legitimate in other sects.

The offenders were referred to the prosecution, which in turn transferred the case to the penal court where a trial date will be set. In his statement, the prosecutor general called for applying a "deterrent" penalty.

(Translated from Arabic by Sonia Farid)