Monday, December 23, 2013

The Emirates and Freedom of Speech

When I worked in Dubai I became aware of some of their laws regarding freedom of speech. Basically, if you say anything bad about the Sheik, you can be arrested. And that includes bad satire. Now we have the case of an American that has been convicted and sentenced to serve one year in a Dubai jail for making a video that the government said violated their cyber security laws. It is supposed to be a tongue in cheek representation of urban ganstas in an area of Dubai known as Satwa. Satwa is primarily an area that contains Indian and Pakistani businesses and is the center of the knock off stores.
Shez Cassim from Minnesota was the film maker. Here is the video in question. Do you think it is worth a year in jail?

If you travel, be aware that other countries have different levels of tolerance for criticism and that if you run afoul of their laws, the US will not help you unless you can generate a lot of publicity.

1 comment:

Old NFO said...

Yep, gotta KNOW the laws...