Saudi Arabian police claim to have arrested all those in attendance at an alleged same-sex wedding close to the holy city of Mecca.
Footage of the ceremony went viral just days ago, showing two men beneath a parasol, walking alongside each other down what appears to be an outdoors wedding aisle.
Another man walks behind the apparent newlyweds, spraying them with confetti while music can be heard playing in the background.
Both men were clothed in traditional Saudi dress, with one appearing to wear a wedding veil.
The statement described how the forbidden ceremony was reported by a man attending a festival close to Mecca:
The man said people attending the event were surprised when a few young men entered the place and tried to perform a ‘gay wedding scene.’ The police were told one of the men appeared to be a crossdresser.
The statement continued:
After the crossdresser and other people involved in the incident were identified, they were all arrested and their case will now be referred to the prosecution,
After the video went viral, Aradiyat governate official Ali bin Youssef al-Sharif told the public an investigation was underway, warning Saudi people they must strictly observe the ‘morals and virtuous values of this blessed country’.
Homosexuality is outlawed in Saudi Arabia and LGBT citizens can face fines, deportations, lashings and even death penalties.
This ceremony appears to have incited particular anger due to its proximity to the holy place of Mecca.
Some people have used this incident to blast the country’s new leader Mohammed bin Salman for his more tolerant views on society.
The 32-year-old Crown Prince was appointed back in June 2017, and wants to take the country in a more modern direction than his predecessors.
The young leader made the following statement at the Future Investment Initiative conference in Riyadh:
We want to lead normal lives, lives where our religion and our traditions translate into tolerance, so that we coexist with the world and become part of the development of the world,
Seventy percent of the Saudi population is under the age of 30.
In all honesty, we will not spend 30 years of our lives dealing with extremist ideologies. We will destroy them today and immediately,