Dubai police arrest group over nude balcony shoot

Dubai marina
At least 12 women were pictured posing nude on a balcony in Dubai’s marina

A group has been arrested in Dubai accused of public debauchery after an outdoor nude photoshoot.

Video footage posted online on Saturday shows a group of naked women having their photo taken on a balcony.

Eleven Ukrainian women are among those detained, the Ukrainian consulate said. A Russian was also detained, according to Russian media. Public debauchery carries a sentence of up to six months in prison and a 5,000 dirham fine (£981).

Many of the UAE’s laws are based on Sharia law, and people have been jailed in the past for public displays of affection and homosexual relationships.

Roughly a dozen women were pictured on the balcony in the Marina district of Dubai, the Ukrainian consulate says it will visit the women on Tuesday.

Earlier reports in Russian media that eight Russian women were arrested have since been denied, but Ria news agency quoted officials as saying that a Russian who organized the shoot has been arrested, he faces up to 18 months in prison, the agency says.

Police in Dubai warned that anyone publishing pornographic material or any material that “may prejudice public morals” faces imprisonment and a fine.

“Such unacceptable behaviours do not reflect the values and ethics of Emirati society,” a police statement said.

Any person who lives in or visits the UAE is subject to its laws: there are no exceptions for tourists.

There have been a few high-profile cases of tourists getting arrested while on holiday in Dubai.

In 2017, a British woman was sentenced to one year in prison for having consensual sex with a man she wasn’t married to. The relationship came to light when the woman reported him to the authorities for sending her threatening messages.

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