TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Dubai pardons woman at center of rape case

AP
Norwegian Marte Deborah Dalelv, 24, arrives at the Norwegian Seaman's Club in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Monday, July 22, 2013. Dalelv at the center of a Dubai rape claim dispute said Sunday that officials have dropped her 16-month sentence for having sex outside marriage and she is free to leave the country. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Monday, July 22, 2013, 9:51 p.m.
 

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — With her passport back in hand, a Norwegian woman at the center of a Dubai rape claim dispute said Monday that officials dropped her 16-month sentence for having sex outside marriage in the latest clash between the city's Islamic-based legal codes and its international branding as a Western-friendly haven.

Dubai authorities hope the pardon of the 24-year-old will allow them to sidestep a potentially embarrassing blow to the city's heavily promoted image as a forward-looking model of luxury, excess and cross-cultural understanding.

“I am very, very happy,” Marte Deborah Dalelv told The Associated Press after she was cleared by the order of Dubai's ruler. “I am overjoyed.”

But the case points to wider issues embedded in the rapid rise of gulf centers such as Dubai and Qatar's capital of Doha, host for the 2022 World Cup. These cities' cosmopolitan ambitions often find themselves at odds with the tug of traditional views on sex and alcohol.

Most foreign residents and visitors coast through Dubai. Women in full Islamic garb shop alongside those in miniskirts, and liquor flows at resorts. Yet once authorities determine a legal line has been crossed, it's often bewildering.

Dalelv, in Dubai for a business meeting, said she told police in March that she was raped by a co-worker after a night that included cocktails. She was held in custody for four days. Her alleged attacker was also pardoned.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Divide between mainstream French, poor Muslims evident in terror reaction
  2. Kurdish forces fight back, but new strategy could hinder resistance
  3. ‘A chink in’ jihadi ‘armor’
  4. Civilians killed in fighting in separatist-held Donetsk, Ukraine
  5. Parole granted to leader of apartheid death squad
  6. Africans open new front in terror war
  7. 3 American contractors killed in apparent Afghan ‘insider attack’
  8. Have another baby, Chinese officials coax couples
  9. Deadly attacks pinned on ISIS
  10. Islamic State forces chased from Syrian Kurdish city
  11. Rescue workers seek survivors in rubble of children’s hospital