Gulf of Taliban: Lawlessness and Misogyny in the UAE and Other Wild Places …………

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The case of a woman who is facing deportation for reporting an attempted rape while being intoxicated in the United Arab Emirates highlights the ongoing struggle for women to have justice when faced with sexual violence in the ultra-wealthy Gulf country. According to reports, when the 26-year-old Kyrgyz woman arrived at a local police station following a taxi driver attempting to rape her, police officers told her she would face charges of drinking alcohol. Instead of acquiescing to the officers threats, she insisted on filing charges against the taxi driver for attempted rape………. “In November last year, two Saudi Arabian men were sentenced to two months in prison for “having sex with a minor” during a New Year’s holiday in the United Arab Emirates. According to local reports, both men were convicted of having consensual sex with a minor, despite the 15-year-old girl’s claims that she was forced to have sex with them in a hotel room. She is to be deported as part of her crime, court officials said……… In early October, two Pakistani men were charged with raping a Filipina waitress. Activists say they are unlikely to face harsh sentences and that the woman will be the one who faces the worst penalty………

There are many other such cases in the UAE. Rape is reported routinely in the local newspapers. As are the “strange” Taliban-style sentences that focus on the female victims as guilty.
The treatment of victims as suspects is a purely local thing, but it is also common in other ‘nominally’ Muslim countries, like Pakistan and Afghanistan. Remember the Qatif girl in Saudi Arabia who was initially punished while her male rapists were barely touched about two years ago? Then there are many cases in Pakistan where women who dare file rape complaints (a rarity) are sentenced to stoning or life in prison for adultery. The guilty males are usually left alone. There was a case once when the woman filed a rape case while the rapist denied it. She was considered to have confessed to adultery (by filing a complaint) and sentenced for adultery, but not the man who denied the charge.
By some twisted local logic in the UAE, a woman who files a rape complaint is sometimes seen by some as exposing her “dirty” laundry. Then there is the local costume in the region of identifying certain single foreign women as being of “easy virtue” or even hookers. Especially if these single foreign women are from certain foreign (Asian) or Arab countries, like those mentioned in this item.  Anyway, this phenomenon is becoming common in the United Arab Emirates, especially in Abu Dhabi and ‘cosmopolitan’ Dubai.


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