UAE is a safe and secure country, and largely because of its strict laws and regulations that protect its residents and visitors. While most of these laws are pretty much about common sense, there are a few that are culturally significant to the region. As ignorance cannot be an excuse to break laws, so be extra careful with the simpler ones like calling someone silly in UAE.
Calling Someone ‘Silly’ in UAE
Don’t speak foul language nor call people ‘stupid’ or ‘silly’, unless you want to end up in jail in the UAE. It is considered illegal and must be avoided in the emirate. Over the past few months, at least 2 people had faced trial on the grounds that they had allegedly insulted their friends. A man called his fiancee ‘fool’ in a WhatsApp message that prompted her to file a case. He got fined Dh20,000. Another similar case relates a man who reportedly called his co-worker ‘silly’ during a football match in Sharjah. He is now standing trial. Expats might be surprised at such activities that are completely innocuous in their home country but in UAE it could land you in jail.
Texting ‘Stupid’ or ‘Silly’ in WhatsApp
Not considering whether profanities are expressed as half-meant jokes or as part of casual conversations, an insult is an insult – and it is a crime, according to the laws of UAE. Punishments for insult differ depending on whether it is delivered face-to-face or via social media and online channels. Direct insult or libel is punishable as per the federal penal code. Indirect insult happening online through social media or mobile apps is punishable under the federal cyber-crime law. It imposes heavier sentences and fines.