Melon Farmers Original Version

Death to TV Companies in Saudi

Clerics call for death of offending TV broadcasters

24th March

Update: Men Only TV...

Saudi clerics call for a ban on women on TV

A group of Saudi clerics urged the kingdom's new information minister on Sunday to ban women from appearing on TV or in newspapers and magazines, making clear that the country's hardline religious establishment is skeptical of a new push toward moderation.

In a statement, the 35 hardline clergymen also called on Abdel Aziz Khoja to prohibit the playing of music and music shows on television.

We have great hope that this media reform will be accomplished by you, said the statement: We have noticed how well-rooted perversity is in the Ministry of Information and Culture, in television, radio, press, culture clubs and the book fair.

Although it raises the pressure on the new minister, the recommendation is likely to have little effect. Khoja's appointment was part of a government shake-up by Abdullah that removed a number of hardline figures and is believed to be part of an effort to weaken the influence of conservatives in this devout desert kingdom.

No Saudi women should appear on TV, no matter what the reason, the statement said: No images of women should appear in Saudi newspapers and magazines.
Saudi Arabia was founded on an alliance with the conservative Wahhabi strain of Islam that sees the mixing of sexes as anathema and believes the playing of music violates religious values.


3rd March

Update: Fatwa against Movies...

Saudi nutter claims TV station owners as bad as drug dealers

A Saudi religious scholar is accusing a royal tycoon and another Saudi businessman of being as dangerous as drug dealers because the TV channels they own broadcast movies.

The fatwa calling for their prosecution is unusual because it publicly chastises two such prominent Saudi figures by name: Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, one of the world's richest people, and Waleed al-Ibrahim, a brother-in-law of the late King Fahd.

Youssef al-Ahmed, a professor in the Islamic law department at the ultraconservative al-Imam University, issued the fatwa in response to a question regarding Alwaleed's assertions last month that the kingdom will have movie theaters one day and that movies play a positive social role in Saudi Arabia.

Cinemas were closed in Saudi Arabia in the early 1980s amid a rise in conservatism. Conservatives believe the movie industry encourages decadence by showing the drinking of alcohol and portraying men and women together in a country that bans liquor and the public mixing of the sexes.

Movies are a tool that hypocrites use to implement their plot to Westernize society, corrupt it and drive it away from (religion), said al-Ahmed in his response, posted on It is a duty to bring him (Alwaleed) and people like him, such as Waleed al-Ibrahim, to justice. They are no less dangerous ... than drug dealers."

Waleed owns the Dubai-based MBC Group media conglomerate, which includes several satellite channels that broadcast movies, entertainment, news and children's programs in Arabic and English. Those include American and European sitcoms and movies.


15th September

Update: More Blood Lust for Censorship...

Another Saudi cleric calls for executions to end astrology TV

You will meet a tall, dark,
frock wearing charlatan.
Beware! He wants to kill you
 in the name of nonsense

Another senior Saudi cleric has called for the deaths of competing purveyors of nonsense. He said astrologers on Arab television should face the death penalty

Sorcerers who appear on satellite channels who are proven to be sorcerers have committed a great crime... and the Muslim consensus is that the apostate's punishment is death by the sword, Sheikh Saleh Al-Fozan told Al-Madina daily.
"Those who call in to these shows should not be accorded Muslim rites when they die, the prominent cleric added.

Many of the hundreds of Arab satellite channels that have sprung up in recent years specialise in horoscopes and other advice to callers on solving problems that is seen by some religious authorities as sorcery . In their capacity as judges, clerics of Saudi Arabia's austere form of Islam often sentence sorcerers to death.

Al-Fozan, a member of the Higher Council of Clerics, was responding to a controversy ignited by a Council colleague, Sheikh Saleh Al-Lohaidan, who said last week that owners of Arab TV shows should be tried and face death over some shows.


13th September

A Blood Lust for Censorship...

Saudi cleric calls for executions to end 'immoral' TV

The head of Saudi Arabia's Islamic Sharia courts has said owners of Arabic television stations airing immodest shows in Ramadan could face execution.

Sheikh Saleh al-Lohaidan, one of the most powerful clerics was responding to a question on a radio phone-in program about the owners of TV stations airing programs that offend modesty, especially during the holy month of Ramadan.

If the evil of those who promote corruption in belief and actions cannot be held back through lesser punishments, then they can be put to death through the judicial process, Lohaidan, head of the Supreme Judicial Council said.

He appeared to be referring to Turkish soap operas that became hugely popular in Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries this year, provoking a storm of anger among conservatives in Saudi Arabia who fear the spread of secular culture.

They gained huge popularity partly because they were dubbed into colloquial Arabic and focused on a Muslim country whose culture many Arabs can relate to. The characters would fast in Ramadan but also drink wine.

The government's official advisor on religious affairs, Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdelaziz Al al-Sheikh, said in July it was not Islamically permissible to watch the Turkish serials.

The shows, Nour and Lost Years , were aired by MBC based in the United Arab Emirates.

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