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Matchmaking Scams Are New Enemy In Saudi Arabia

RIYADH — With more than 257,000 unmarried women in the country, and strict religious codes, traditional matchmaking is a lucrative business in Saudi Arabia. Yet with the rise of social media and online marriage websites, the industry is coming under pressure to stay financially viable, which has led to several recent reports of scandals that have broken both hearts and the country's strict Islamic laws.

The recent allegations of matchmaking abuses led to an uproar that prompted the Saudi government to launch multi-ministry investigations and seek new regulations. The Saudi ministries of Justice, Interior and Social Affairs have highlighted particularly outrageous cases, in which matchmakers — sometimes operating with fake licenses — “tricked” their clients, Al-Arabiya reported.

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Geopolitics

Our 'Emotional' Divide: How The Ukraine War Reveals A World Broken In Two

Russia's invasion has created a stark global divide: them and us. On one side are the countries refusing to condemn Moscow, with the West on the other. It's a dangerous split that could have repercussions far into the future.

Protesters against the war in Ukraine demonstrate in front of the Russian embassy in London

Dominique Moïsi

-Analysis-

PARIS — "The West and the Rest of Us." That's the title of a 1975 essay written by Nigerian essayist and critic Chinweizu Ibekwe. I've been thinking about his words as the war in Ukraine both reveals and accelerates divisions of the world that I believe are ultimately "emotional" in nature.

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With war returning to Europe and the risk of escalation, there is a gap between the Western view and that of the "others," a distinct "us and them." This gap cannot be explained in strictly geographical, political, and economic terms.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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