Riyadh Book Fair Opens: More Access for Women, Protests Against Detentions


Mostly enthusiastic stories and tweets marked the opening day of the Riyadh International Book Fair:

The fair opened at 10 a.m. yesterday, with the country’s Committee for the Prevention of Vice & Promotion of Virtue (PVPV) police apparently sidelined, although still with a large presence at the fair.

Sheikh Abdel Latif Al-Sheikh, head of the country’s PVPV, announced last week that both men and women would be allowed to attend the fair. Al-Sheikh also said, as reported by various sources, that the PVPV would not confiscate any books on display at the fair, although they certainly would report suspect titles to the Ministry of Culture.

Al-Sheikh said: “Shopping is open to all men and women as long as they do not commit improper acts that are against Shariah.”

Princess Adela Bint Abdullah was honored on the fair’s first day, and she spoke out for Saudi women thinkers and writers, according…

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