Saudi Arabia's religious police have announced a ban on selling cats and dogs as pets, or walking them in public in the Saudi capital, because of men using them as a means of making passes at women, an official said on Wednesday.
Othman al-Othman, head of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice in Riyadh, known as the Muttawa, told the Saudi edition of al-Hayat daily that the commission has started enforcing an old religious edict.
The reason behind reinforcing the edict now was a rising fashion among some men using pets in public "to make passes on women and disturb families," he said, without giving more details.
The 5,000-strong religious police oversees the adherence to Wahabism -- a strict version of Sunni Islam, which also forces women to cover from head to toe when in public, and bans them from driving.
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