JEDDAH – A number of students from Dar Al-Hekma College have said they will file a complaint with the court against defamatory remarks made against them on Twitter following British Prime Minister David Cameron’s visit to the college Wednesday.
The remarks were about female students greeting Cameron with their faces uncovered, according to an Arabic language daily.
The students said the accusations contradicted the teachings of Islam, which considers it impermissible to accuse someone falsely without any evidence.
This issue went viral on Twitter and some even accused the parents of the students of being responsible for what their daughters did.
A number of scholars, writers and intellectuals called for not letting those who falsely accused students to get away with it.
Many students from other universities and colleges lauded the British premier’s visit to Dar Al-Hekma, saying it will effectively contribute to efforts aimed at shedding more light on the Saudi higher education system.
Dr. Suhair Al-Qurashi, dean of the college, refused to comment on the reactions to Cameron’s visit, but she expressed her disgust and anger over such reactions.
Noran Al-Juhani, a student of King Abdulaziz University, said the visit does not only reflect the Kingdom’s prestigious educational status but also the political and economic one. “We should be proud of such a visit because it shows the world the true image of our Kingdom, especially in light of the misconceptions some Westerners hold about the education system here.”
Those who attacked the students and described what the students did as something impermissible in Islam do not have sufficient knowledge, she said.
They just ignored the importance of the education system and its development. “We should move forward, not backward.”
Mahmoud Talib, a college student, described the accusations as unethical saying the students did not do anything disgraceful. One the contrary, they reflected a good image about the Kingdom and its education system. “We can’t allow these bad images to be spread. We should work hard to show the world that we have a prestigious education system.”
Khuloud Al-Harthy, from Umm Al-Qura University in Makkah, said those who claimed that what Dar Al-Hekma students did was impermissible were wrong.
“How can they say something is haram inside the college while it is not haram in other establishments, hospitals and restaurants that attract foreign experts.”
She believes that such people do not care about religion as much as they care about how to grab attention to themselves even if it is at the expense of successful people.
Dar Al-Hekma College enjoys prominent status in the Kingdom.