(CNN) -- Saudi Arabia's religious police detained two male novelists for questioning last week after they attempted to get the autograph of a female writer at a book fair in Riyadh, according to local media reports.
According to the Saudi daily newspaper Al-Watan, Abdu Khal and Abdullah Thabet approached female writer Halima Muzfar when they were stopped by police.
Both novelists, who were held for questioning but not charged with a crime, are demanding an apology from the conservative Muslim kingdom's Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice.
The commission, feared by many Saudis, is made up of several thousand religious policemen charged with, among other things, enforcement of dress codes, mandatory observance of prayer times and segregation of the sexes.
Saudi Arabia follows a strict interpretation of Islam called Wahhabism and punishes unrelated men and women who are caught mingling in public.
The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Saudi), CNN 37 Comments
[3/8/2009 1:00:15 PM]
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Submitted By: Russell