The move is the latest attempt by the Saudi government to censor what it sees as LGBTQ references in the conservative country. State-run Al-Ekhbariya television said rainbow-colored materials send a “poisoned message.”
Saudi Arabia is confiscating rainbow-colored toys, shirts and other items from stores in the capital Riyadh, according to a report by the state-run Al-Ekhbariya channel.
The report, which ran Tuesday evening, claims the Saudi government is attempting to protect children from material it believes is promoting homosexuality.
“We are giving a tour of the items that contradict the Islamic faith and public morals and promote homosexual colors targeting the younger generation,” a Saudi Commerce Ministry official said in the report.
The officials were shown in the report seizing rainbow-colored bows, pencil cases and hats from a shop in the capital.
The report claims the rainbow-colored materials send a “poisoned message” to children.
The owner of one of the shops being targeted protested the move and told the officials that the materials were simply rainbow colors.
What is the status of LGBTQ rights in Saudi Arabia?
Same-sex relations and forms of gender expression are criminalized in Saudi Arabia, with punishments given based on interpretations of Sharia law.
The country routinely cracks down on films that include LGBTQ-related content.
Saudi Arabia recently banned the films Disney’s “Lightyear” and Marvel’s “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” from movie theaters. Both films include references to same-sex relations.
Source: DW News