The United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Saturday relaxed personal freedoms, relaxed drinking restrictions and Islamic laws criminalizing “honour of murder”.
That development came weeks after US President Donald Trump brokered a historic peace agreement to normalize relations between the UAE, Israel, Sudan and Bahrain.
In the legal reform, the UAE also abolished the punishment of allowing unmarried couples to live together. Although the authorities used to take another approach to foreigners, especially in Dubai, there is always a threat of punishment in the hearts of tourists.
The Gulf States also criminalized the custom of “honour of killing”, according to which a male relative can escape prosecution for beating a woman who is deemed to bring shame or humiliation to the family.
In the past, human rights organizations have lashed out in the UAE and other Gulf countries, accusing them of killing hundreds of women in activities such as licentiousness, intercourse with men, or similar activities, which may be regarded as “shame.” family.
The Gulf states also warned men to harass or stalk women, adding that those found guilty will be punished. The National Daily reported: “Men who subject women to any form of harassment will be punished more severely. This is considered to include street harassment or stalking.”
The government defended the comprehensive reform of Islamic law, saying it was an attempt to incorporate the “principle of tolerance” into the country’s laws and to ensure a better investment environment.
“I could not be happier for these new laws that are progressive and proactive,” said Emirati film-maker Abdallah Al Kaabi. “2020 has been a tough and transformative year for the UAE.”