White House Press Corps Warned: In Riyadh, Don't Leave Your Hotel Or Photograph Women

Via several e-mail chains comes today this authentic and plaintive e-mail from the United States Embassy in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Because the White House added the Saudi stop to the President's oversees trip so close to the date of departure, the Saudi government is allowing U.S. journalists to enter the country without a visa. That's nice of them. Through the U.S. embassy, though, the Saudi government insists that the White House press corps stay in the confines of their hotel (the Marriott in Riyadh) except for official events on penalty of "arrest and detention."


The embassy also passes along these tips and pointers about Saudi "law and custom."

·       Do not photograph women, mosques, government buildings, airports, military facilities, souqs, old buildings, homes or Saudi nationals.  Photographs should not be taken outside of official venues and events without consulting with White House press staff and US Embassy press staff on-site.

·       The wearing of attire considered appropriate by local standards is strongly advised.  

·       Do not import or display any drugs, alcoholic beverages, pork products, any form of pornography, or any non-Islamic religious material.  

·       The Marriott Hotel has an ATM in the lobby, thus no currency exchange will be available. 

Thank you for your cooperation.

US Embassy

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia 
Presented by

Marc Ambinder is an Atlantic contributing editor. He is also a senior contributor at Defense One, a contributing editor at GQ, and a regular contributor at The Week.

The Man Who Owns 40,000 Video Games

A short documentary about an Austrian gamer with an uncommon obsession

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The 86-Year-Old Farmer Who Won't Quit

A filmmaker returns to his hometown to profile the patriarch of a family farm

Video

Riding Unicycles in a Cave

"If you fall down and break your leg, there's no way out."

Video

Carrot: A Pitch-Perfect Satire of Tech

"It's not just a vegetable. It's what a vegetable should be."

Video

An Ingenious 360-Degree Time-Lapse

Watch the world become a cartoonishly small playground

Video

The Benefits of Living Alone on a Mountain

"You really have to love solitary time by yourself."

More in Politics

Just In