A Norwegian woman who was sentenced to 16 months in prison for the crime of “illicitit sex” by the sharia-based justice system in the United Arab Emirates after she reported a rape has been pardoned by the Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
The pardon comes after a public outcry over the sentence by the Norwegian ambassador and thousands worldwide who picked up the cause on social media.
The story began when Marte Deborah Dalelv, 25, who was working in Dubai, went to the police after being raped by a colleague after a night out. Her passport was confiscated, she was not allowed to make telephone calls and was subsequently thrown in jail. She was recently convicted of having illicit sex (sex outside of marriage in the UAE is against the law), drinking alcohol and lying to the police.
Her alleged rapist, a Sudanese man who is married with three children, was sentenced to 13 months in prison. He has also been pardoned and is free to leave the country. Dalelv will also be allowed to leave the country, which she plans to do as soon as her exit visa is processed. She has also dropped the charges against him so that she will not be involved in case in the future.
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