Saudi body sees increase in online harassment against children during COVID-19 period

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Saudi Arabia’s Human Rights Commission said there has been an increase in the cases of online harassment of children during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, adding that it has received 679 cases within the past several months.

The authority confirmed that it monitored a number of violations against children on social media, indicating that the punishment for harassment is imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years and a fine not exceeding 300,000 riyals or one of the two penalties.

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“The Human Rights Commission is looking forward to caring for children to achieve an effective partnership between all government agencies and civil society institutions concerned with children and to develop a joint action plan to raise awareness of the dangers,” Noura al-Haqbani, spokesperson for the Human Rights Commission, told Al Arabiya.

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“We are working to ensure that the follow-up steps improve the quality of assistance and support provided to the families of victims legally, psychologically and medically as well,” she added.

“The Kingdom’s leadership under the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and His Crown Prince, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, from the first day enshrined the protection and fulfillment of children's rights with great care. We have achieved great progress in this field by taking many measures and programs that contributed to strengthening the relevant legal and institutional frameworks,” al-Haqbani added.

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