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British Mum Facing Time in UAE Jail for Social Media Post

British Mum Facing Time in UAE Jail for Social Media Post

Did you know that the UAE has some of the strictest laws governing social media?

Despite its reputation as a global commerce and tourism hotspot, the Arab state has strict laws which on occassion take foreigners by surprise.

You may remember the story of another Brit who ended up in jail for flicking the middle finger?

On this occassion the unlucky foreigner is British Mum, Laleh Sharavesh, who was arrested when arriving in Dubai with her daughter.

Her crime?

She was a bit rude about her ex-husband and his new wife, which in the UAE is enough to get you arrested and put before a judge.

Sharavesh was travelling to Dubai to pay her respects at the funeral of her ex-husband.

Unbeknown to her, the new wife had reported her to the authorities, pointing out that in an old Facebook post she had called her ex an "idiot" and had called the new wife, "a horse".

According to the UAE's strict social media laws, this is enough to have her prosecuted.

She now potentially faces 2 years in jail with the British Embassy saying it will do nothing to intervene.

"All they did was recommend her an expensive list of lawyers. When Laleh told them she can't afford to stay in even a cheap hotel while she waits and is in danger of becoming homeless in Dubai, the FCO staff just told her she should "find someone to borrow money from"," stated Radha Stirling, CEO of human rights organisation Detained In Dubai, who is officially representing Laleh.

The lesson? When going to a foreign country you have to take local laws seriously.

If you travelling to the UAE or sending staff to work in the Emirate, our UAE Online Cultural Awareness Course is a great way to provide some crucial insights into the local culture.

 

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