Saudi cleric says chatting online is haram
Abdullah al-Mutlaq warned that “the devil would be present when women talk to men” and urged women not to talk to males
A prominent Saudi cleric has declared that online conversations between men and women are religiously forbidden and has warned that they may lead to committing sin.
According to Saudi daily al-Eqitisadiya, Sheikh Abdullah al-Mutlaq, a member of the Saudi Committee of Senior Scholars, said that chatting online through social networks falls under the forbidden “khulwa” (a religious term describing a situation where a man and a woman are alone in a private area).
Sheikh al-Mutlaq, speaking on a local Saudi radio show, warned that “the devil would be present when women talk to men” and urged women not to talk to males, even if the purpose of the discussion is to obtain guidance and advice.
Saudi social media users took to the Internet to express mixed reactions regarding his statement.
Whilst some users praised the cleric and said that he was right, most other users ridiculed him and his views by saying things such as “why don’t they (religious clerics) just ban women all together?”
Meanwhile, others wondered if direct messages could cause accidental pregnancy.