Dubai police arrest group over nude balcony shoot
A group have been arrested in Dubai and charged with 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.
Eight Russian women are among those detained, the Russian consulate said. The consulate described the charges as “serious”.
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. But Russian media reports say up to 40 people were involved in the photo shoot.
“They turned to the Consulate General for help, but it is difficult to do anything here,” the consulate said.
The organiser of the shoot faces up to 18 months in prison, Ria Novosti reports.
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.