Saudi police arrest man who helped Israeli sneak into Mecca | Religion News

Mecca regional police have arrested an unnamed Saudi nationwide who helped sneak the Israeli reporter into Mecca.

A Saudi man who allegedly helped a Jewish Israeli journalist enter the holy metropolis of Mecca has been arrested, police within the kingdom have mentioned, after a backlash on social media.

The journalist, Gil Tamary of Israel’s Channel 13, posted on Twitter a video of himself on Monday sneaking into Mecca, Islam’s holiest metropolis, in defiance of a ban on non-Muslims.

Mecca regional police have “referred a citizen” to prosecutors for alleged complicity in “transferring and facilitating the entry of a (non-Muslim) journalist”, a police spokesperson mentioned in feedback reported by the official Saudi Press Company late on Friday.

SPA didn’t identify Tamary however mentioned he’s an American citizen, implying he had entered the nation utilizing his American passport because the kingdom has no formal ties with Israel.

His case has additionally been referred to prosecutors “to take the mandatory procedures towards him in accordance with the utilized legal guidelines”, regardless of the Israeli nationwide now not being within the kingdom.

Whereas Muslims of any nationality and background can enter Mecca, non-Muslims are usually not permitted as a result of a really particular code of conduct and behavior is required of all folks inside its boundaries, together with sure types of modesty, ritual cleaning and prayers.

In his roughly 10-minute clip, Tamary visits Mount Arafat, the place robed Muslim pilgrims collect to wish through the climax of the Hajj pilgrimage every year.

He makes clear he is aware of that what he’s doing is outlawed however says he needed to showcase “a spot that’s so vital to our Muslim brothers and sisters”.

Tamary left the mount after he mentioned the non secular police started asking him questions to ensure he was a Muslim.

The general public backlash over Tamary’s go to was instant on social media, with Muslims and Saudis expressing their anger over his deception and obvious disregard for the sanctity of the location.

Translation: If he’s a Muslim, he’s welcome no matter his nationality. But when he’s not a Muslim, I hope that he will probably be investigated and with those that cooperated with him and understand how he entered the Holy Sanctuary. What God has forbidden within the Holy Quran can’t be tolerated and neglected. 

Translation: The Saudi media insists on ignoring what we all know. I do know he’s an Israeli journalist with an American passport, and also you all understand it, and the [Saudi] authorities itself is aware of that, and gave him particular permission to work as a reporter for an Israeli media firm. The journalist himself within the video boasted that he was the primary Israeli to enter Mecca.

The incident comes as Saudi-Israeli ties have been quietly rising amid shared considerations over Iran. Publicly, the dominion insists its coverage is that full ties can solely occur when Palestinian statehood and rights are assured.

The reporter and Channel 13 responded on Twitter after the report aired. The information channel, in each Hebrew and Arabic, mentioned Tamary’s report was pushed by “journalistic curiosity” and a need to witness and see issues first hand.

Police referred to as on guests to respect Saudi Arabia’s legal guidelines, significantly relating to Mecca and Islam’s holiest websites within the kingdom.

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