Saudi Arabia amending laws to monitor social media

The Saudi authorities are reviewing the Anti-Cybercrime Law to amend it so as to initiate legal proceedings against social networking sites such as Twitter for allowing accounts which promote adultery, homosexuality and atheism, according to a report published in a section of the Arabic press on Sunday.

according to Alarabiya, Researcher and consultant of new media uses and Shoura Council member Dr. Fayez al-Shehri told Al-Hayat Arabic daily that there are around 25,000 accounts on Twitter targeting Saudis. There are around 4,500 accounts that promote atheism. Around 15,000-25,000 of such accounts are in Arabic language.

 

Al-Shehri noted that he monitored a large number of such accounts in different languages that appear and disappear in an organized manner. “This is a cultural war. These accounts are not published for pure financial gains,” al-Shehri said, adding that organized bodies are behind such targeted attacks, which were earlier conducted through traditional media.

Two month ago, Saudi passed a set of laws which declare atheists to be terrorists, and accompanied with draconian punishments - even death - that put atheists in Saudi Arabia at great risk.

You can join this petition to push Saudi government to rescind designating atheists as “Terrorists”

Recently Saudi court has imprisoned blogger Raif Badawi for 10 years for "insulting Islam" and setting up a liberal web forum, local media report.

He was also sentenced to 1,000 lashes and ordered to pay a fine of 1 million riyals ($266,000; £133,000).