Hardliners call some celebrations “indecent acts”Mosque preachers don’t like Western dancing [Archives:2004/712/Local News]

February 16 2004

A significant number of preachers in Sana'a and other citizens heavily criticized the ministry of culture and tourism for allowing what they called “indecent acts” in celebration of the title of Sana'a as the Arab Cultural Capital for 2004.
They have accused the ministry of allowing unethical practices in bringing foreign musical and dance groups from Europe and elsewhere to celebrate the capital in a time the “city needs to go back to the ethics of Islam and Sharia and abandon any immoral Western behaviors.”
The celebrations started last Wednesday in Sana'a to officially announce the proclamation of Sanaa as the Arab Cultural Capital 2004, amid expectations of various cultural and theatrical activities throughout 2004.
Some hardliner preachers claimed that such practices have no relation to Arab culture, but are “imported values from the West that do not conform to our realities and tradition.”
Furthermore, many of the preachers reemphasized their usual accusations against the USA and other countries for supporting the festivities, which they claim are a step to destroy the country's Islamic heritage and ideology.
“They have started by hinting to changing our curricula, now they have moved to culture,” one of the preachers said.
It is noteworthy that mosque preachers have some significant influence on Yemeni citizens, especially as they consider them their guides who cannot go wrong, since they base their views on the Islamic Sharia.