Report: Religious conservatives storm Saudi Book Fair
Several men, believed to be part of a police unit responsible for the protection of virtue and he prevention of vice, stormed the Riyadh book fair, according to media reports Thursday, dpa reported.
The Gulf-based Arab News website reported that the virtue police stormed the book fair late Wednesday, during its second day, and "roughed up participants" and took control of a microphone, telling women to comply with religion or risk going to hell.
The Saudi Minister of Culture and Information, Abdulaziz Khoja, who was at the book fair, was said to be appalled by the incident.
"Khoja was reportedly so upset that he left the fair premises through the back door," according to the news website.
Khoja was earlier quoted in Saudi media as saying the book fair would serve as a platform for people who seek knowledge, and offer them an opportunity to taste different cultures and understand the views of others.
Security briefly detained the six men who stormed the book fair, before releasing them.