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Saudi Arabia gets ready for Halloween, a once-banned party — RT in French

Saudi Arabia has organized a “Scary Weekend” in the streets of the capital. Previously condemned, the celebration of Halloween is part of a societal change wanted by Mohammed Ben Salamne. An opening that does not fully achieve consensus.

Who would have thought that one day the very conservative kingdom of Saudi Arabia would celebrate Halloween, once prohibited? And yet, for two days, Riyadh did host a costumed event titled “Scary Weekend” on October 27-28.

In the streets of the Saudi capital, all the characteristic details of the Anglo-Saxon party were noticeable: from the horror film decor, to the frightening staging and the stressful music. Men and women strolled around disguised as ghosts, vampires, mummies, prisoners or even clowns.

Celebrating the dead and the transition to winter were previously prohibited and condemned by the Saudi authorities. The celebration of this event was considered a sin incompatible with the principles of Islam. Moreover, in 2018, the police arrested a group of young people who participated in Halloween.

On social networks, reactions were contrasted between the supporters of this opening and the more conservative, some of whom, for example, reproach to the Saudi kingdom a double standard, not allowing the celebration of the birthday of the Prophet, known as Al Mawlid.

This radical societal change is the pious wish of Mohammed Bin Salman, known as “MBS”, who has become the strongman of the Wahhabi kingdom since 2015. This young leader never stops wanting to change the image of Saudi Arabia, even to offend the Saudi old guard. In addition to the celebration of Halloween, Saudi Arabia has been welcoming visa-free tourists since September 2019, the country has organized international sporting events, concerts by Western stars and since June 2018 has allowed Saudi women to drive.


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