Gay Filipinos arrested in Saudi Arabia

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Two men from the Philippines have been arrested in the Saudi capital Riyadh for homosexual acts.

The arrests by the Muslim nation’s “morality police” is the latest in a crackdown on gays.

“The authorities, who arrested the two men while committing the crime, also seized some alcohol owned by the detainees,” according to

Click here to see a picture of the men.

“The work permit of the two men expired two years ago and their only source of income is through selling alcoholic drinks and working as prostitutes.”

Police from the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice unit reportedly found phone numbers of the men’s clients and have passed a report onto the District Attorney.

In Saudi Arabia homosexuality is illegal under sharia, or Islamic Law.

The maximum sentence it carries is the death penalty and this is most commonly performed by public beheading.

Gay rights are not recognised in the kingdom and the publication of any material promoting them is banned for its “un-Islamic” themes.

With strict laws restricting unmarried opposite-sex couples, however, and public displays of affection accepted between men, some Westerners have suggested that sharia encourages homosexuality.

Last month 55 people were arrested at a “gay party” in Qatif province.

Drugs, alcohol were reportedly found at the gathering.

TV channel al-Arabiya reported that two young men wearing women’s make up and dancing together were among those arrested by religious police.

In June more than 20 men after a raid on another property in Qatif.

Quantities of alcohol were seized at a gathering of young men. Many were initially arrested on homosexuality charges but later released.

In October 2007 two men were publicly flogged in Saudi Arabia after being found guilty of sodomy and sentenced to 7,000 lashes.