Dabbing is a Crime in Saudi Arabia

Photo: Todd Williamson (Getty Images)

Could the “dab” be the protest movement’s new symbol of solidarity? While it’s too early to predict if the hip hop dance is 2017’s “raised fist,” a popular TV personality in Saudi Arabia has been detained by the authorities for dabbing.

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Actor and singer Abdallah Al Shaharani took part in a musical festival in the city of Taif on Monday night and broke out the dab during a concert (check out the Independent video below).

Although the crowd gave him props, Al Shaharani was detained for what Abdul-Ella Al-Sharif, Secretary-General of the National Committee for Drug Control, said was “contrary to the national strategy to combat drugs” and he had been arrested in the same way anyone who “incites or advocates for abuse of drugs” would be.


This is the same Saudi government agency that banned the dab due to to its supposed connections to marijuana use — okay, they may have a point there. 

Shaharani’s arrest has gone viral, causing a worldwide social media storm debating on whether he should face punishment or not.

For his part, Shaharani tweeted on Tuesday that he was sorry for his actions, “I am most apologetic to our honourable government and my dear president for the spontaneous movement I made in the Ta’if Festival.”