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Saudis defend woman following skirt arrest

After Saudi police briefly arrested a woman who appeared in an online video wearing an "indecent" skirt and crop top, many Saudis sprang to her defence on social media.
Many Twitter users referred to the June visit by President Donald Trump whose wife, Melania, and daughter, Ivanka, were widely praised by Saudi commentators for their elegance despite eschewing veils and wearing stylish dresses.
The Saudi woman, identified as Model Khulood, appeared on a Snapchat clip strolling through an empty mudbrick village alleyway, wearing a short skirt and a top that exposed her midriff.
The video provoked outraged commentary on social media culminating in her arrest.
Police freed the women on Tuesday night after she told investigators the video was posted on social media without her knowledge.
Women in the ultra-conservative kingdom are bound by law to wear robes and a headscarf, are banned from driving and require consent of a male guardian for most legal actions.
But after her detention was reported by state media, many Saudis rushed to her defence.
"If she were a foreigner, they would sing about the beauty of her waist and the enchantment of her eyes. But because she is Saudi they are calling for her arrest," Fatima al-Issa tweeted.
One social media user superimposed Ivanka Trump's face on Khulood.
Despite the outrage over the video, Saudis have easy access to racy imagery through the internet and satellite channels.
When tabloid pictures showed wealthy Saudi businessman Hasan al-Jameel kissing American pop icon Rihanna in a pool in June, many Saudi men whooped in praise.
"Why is no one asking for his trial?" Twitter user Noura Suliman asked on Wednesday.
Others were unmoved, arguing the kingdom has its own social codes like any other country.
"In France, the niqab (face veil) is banned and women are fined if they wear it. In Saudi Arabia, wearing robes and modest clothing is part of the kingdom's laws," one person tweeted.
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