Scottish Tory leader gives perfect response to tributes paid to late Saudi king

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The leader of the Scottish Conservatives Ruth Davidson has condemned the UK for flying flags at half mast a tribute to the late Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz.

The 90-year-old monarch died after suffering from a lung infection, and is succeeded by his half-brother Salman.

The Prime Minister David Cameron has said he is “deeply saddened” by the passing of the King, and the Prince of Wales is to travel to Saudi Arabia to represent the queen and to “pay his condolences”.

Despite floods of tributes from British figures, including claims that the King modernised or “reformed” Saudi Arabia, LGBT people still face harsh treatment there.

Davidson, who is openly gay, tweeted this afternoon to say flying the flags at half-mast was “a steaming pile of nonsense”.

There are no legal protections for LGBT people in Saudi Arabia, and Britain and the US have often been criticised for being close to the oil-rich nation where gay people can be stoned to death.

She later replied to a follower saying it was a “stupid precedent to set”.

A Scottish Conservative spokesman said: “Ruth’s tweets on this matter speak for themselves.

“She is a strong advocate for the rights of women and disagrees with lowering government flags in Britain for the Saudi King.”

Concerns were raised in during a state visit to the UK by the late King in 2007 about the treatment of women and gay people by the Saudi kingdom.

Women are not granted the vote, and are unable to drive in Saudi Arabia.

Many on Twitter have criticised the choice to fly all flags at half mast given the appalling treatment of LGBT people and women in the Saudi kingdom.