Qatar launches campaign for 'modest' dress code for visitors
Qatar has launched a social media campaign urging tourists to dress “modestly” in public and respect Qatar Islamic values.
Along with Instagram and Twitter account, “reflect your respect” leaflets are being handed out with diagrams of what is and is not acceptable. The leaflet reads: “If you are in Qatar, you are one of us. Help us preserve Qatar’s culture and values, please dress modestly in public places.”
Short dresses, sleeveless clothing and crop tops are banned for women, while men are also told not to wear shorts and vest tops revealing their chest. It urges people to cover up from their shoulders to knees and avoid leggings.
“The amount of immodest clothing is growing in public places, especially shopping malls. Such foreign behaviour conflicts with our traditions,” Nasser Al Maliki. “We do not want our kids to be exposed to it or learn from it, and that’s why we will start this campaign.”
Qatar is home to about 17,500 British nationals and 40,000 more visit every year, according to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).
Wearing clothes considered indecent is illegal and uttering “indecent phrases” or doing anything thought obscene in public is punishable with a fine and up to six months in prison. Kissing or physical intimacy between couples is forbidden.
The campaign reflects the FCO’s advice for visitors to respect local customs and laws at all times and ensure their actions do not offend other cultures or religious beliefs.