RIYADH - Sheikh Saleh al-Talib, a prominent imam of the Grand Mosque in Makkah has been reportedly detained in Saudi Arabia.
He is reportedly detained for delivering sermons against mixed public gatherings.
Talib also serves a judge in the holy city, according to a report published on *Al Jazeera link* .
According to Prisoners of Conscience, a social media advocacy group which documents arrests of Saudi religious scholars and preaches, Sheikh was arrested after delivering a sermon on the duty in Islam to speak against evil in public.
We confirm the arrest of the Imam of Haram Sheikh Dr. Saleh al Taleb, and it is said that the reason for the arrest is a speech about the doing evil and the duty in Islam to deny that in public! pic.twitter.com/8jq70ljDGg link
— Prisoners of Conscie (@m3takl_en) August 19, 2018 link
*Khaleej Online* reported that Talib derided the mixing of unrelated men and women at concerts and various mixed entertainment events.
Although, the preacher did not directly criticise the rulers, the kingdom has relaxed laws on female attendance at public events in recent months.
Saudi Arabia has not issued any official statement pertaining to his arrest.
Talib’s English and Arabic social media accounts were deactivated soon after his reported arrest.
“Authorities are looking at everyone that’s influential and has a presence on the scene. Even those that have kept quiet or pledged allegiance to the state, even those that have been drumming up the authorities and their initiatives, even these are not safe,” said Yahya Assiri, a UK-based Saudi human rights activist.