Saudi entertainment chief sacked after outrage over circus

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Saudi entertainment chief sacked after outrage over circus

today sacked the of its entertainment authority, said, following a conservative against a circus featuring women wearing figure-hugging costumes.

“Ahmad al-Khatib, of the has been removed from his position,” the official (SPA) tweeted citing a royal decree, without giving a reason.

The pro-government Sabq website said Khatib was dismissed over a controversial circus performance in Riyadh, which included women wearing “indecent clothes”.

A video circulating on appeared to show a female performer in a tight pink costume, drawing outrage from Saudi arch-conservatives.

Saudi officials did not respond to AFP’s requests for comment. Khatib’s sacking comes in the midst of Crown Mohammed bin Salman’s far-reaching reforms that have ended decades-long bans on women driving, cinemas and mixed-gender concerts.

The vigorous against what was widely identified online as a Russian circus underscores the challenges facing the as he seeks to modernise a country steeped in conservatism.

“Cynics who lightly dismiss the colossal challenges that (the prince) faces in his social reforms should view this video of young Saudi men passionately denouncing the presence of a Russian circus with women performers in their country,” tweeted Ali Shihabi, of the pro-Saudi, Washington-based think tank,

The video posted by Shihabi included a cutaway shot from the circus and monologues from several men who emphasised the need to uphold Islamic principles.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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