Saudi police arrest TikToker for alleged lesbian subtext

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07/31/2022

Tala Safwan has five million followers on TikTok and 800,000 on YouTube. She lives in Saudi Arabia. Her content is similar to other young social media influencers around the world. Pranks, challenges, skits, and answers to viewers’ questions. But a recent video set off a Twitstorm when conservative Saudis accused her of sexually suggestive comments. In the offending clip, Tala Safwan is seen chatting to a female friend and inviting her over to her house. She tells the friend that ‘everyone will be asleep’ and ‘no one will hear her scream’. A hashtag protesting the video and creator started trending on Twitter: ‘Tala offends society’. Tala Safwan denied any lesbian subtext and said people had misunderstood her video. She also said critics edited her video to show her comments out of context. Saudi police since announced her arrest. While they did not name Tala Safwan, they described the prisoner as a person “who appeared in a broadcast talking to another woman with sexual content and suggestiveness that could have a negative impact on public morality.”

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