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UAE jails Norwegian rape victim for 'adultery'

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Marte Deborah Dalelv, 24, jailed in Dubai for adultery after reporting to the police that she had been raped

A Norwegian woman has been sentenced to 16 months in jail in Dubai for adultery after reporting her sexual assault to the police.

Marte Deborah Dalelv, 24, who was convicted on Wednesday, was on a business trip to Dubai when she says the attack happened after a night out with colleagues.

“I woke up and I realized I was being raped and I went down to the lobby and I asked them to call the police for me. They asked me are you sure you want to call the police? And I thought of course I want to call the police because that’s the natural reaction where I am from,” she said.

Norway’s foreign ministry has expressed hope that talks over the case with UAE officials will produce positive results. Dalelv is currently free on bail and is at a Norwegian church in Dubai.

“We hope of course, that a political dialogue can turn out to be productive in her case. But right now, we are in the midst of an appeal, and there is a lawsuit in progress, so we’ll see what the future brings,” said Kathryn Raadim, political consultant at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Dalelv is appealing against the verdict. The appeal is due to be held in September. Islamic countries have one of the worst laws in the world where Christians and generally any non-Muslims are treated like second-class people. Best advice would be not to travel in these countries for no matter what reason.


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