Saudi Arabia: Emir bans playing and carrying of musical instruments in region

8 July 2016

jeddah saudi arabia
Emir Prince Khaled Al-Faisal of the eastern region of Makkah banned the playing and carrying of musical instruments, headphones and speakers in public places within all governorates in the region on 16 June 2016, reported several local news sources, including the Saudi Gazette, Emirates 24/7 and Gulf Digital News, on 16 June 2016.

The directive included strong instructions to carry it out “strictly” and to “firmly” punish violators, and came after reports were issued concerning “inappropriate behaviours and activities” in the Jeddah Corniche, a Red Sea coastal area in the city of Jeddah, the largest city and main port in the region. Makkah is Saudi Arabia’s most populous region, whose capital Mecca is the holiest city in Islam.

The ban covers public places, such as public parks, jogging areas, walkways, and sports facilities, and also includes the banning of obscene behaviour, wearing indecent clothes, walking pet animals, the smoking of tobacco and shisha, and the lighting of firewood or charcoal.


» Emirates 24/7 – 16 June 2016:
Saudi bans shisha, indecent clothes

» Saudi Gazette – 16 June 2016:
Emir bans abrasive behaviour in public

» Gulf Digital News – 16 June 2016:
Mecca bans sheesha, smoking, music in public places

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» 20 January 2016: Saudi Arabia: Festival stopped due to “swaying and dancing”

» 17 December 2015: Saudi Arabia: Growing clamp down on freedom of expression

» 30 June 2015: Saudi Arabia: Concert with mixed gender audience cancelled

» 3 July 2013: Saudi Arabia: Women banned from entering music shops

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