Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the Saudi crown prince, said Friday that Saudi Arabia will not tolerate “a situation where a woman is raped, tortured or raped in the kingdom” and vowed that the kingdom will “stand against all crimes against women.”
“We will not accept a situation in which innocent women were raped or tortured,” he told the nation.
“We cannot tolerate a country where there is a culture where rape and sexual violence against women are condoned, where they are accepted and encouraged.
We will not allow a country to live in such a way.”
Saudi Arabia, home to the world’s largest Muslim population, has been a hotbed of anti-women violence, with women facing severe harassment and even death.
The kingdom’s King Salman, who took power in March, has pushed to modernize and improve the country’s image.
In recent years, he has also made efforts to reform Saudi Arabia and is now facing criticism for his decision to place a statue of Muhammad at the Al-Azhar mosque in the capital, Riyadh.
In December, he said that the country needed to do more to address violence against its women.
The Saudi government says it is working on ways to prevent and address such violence.
The government has been criticized for not taking swift and effective measures to tackle such crimes, including by women themselves.
But a new report released this week by the International Center for the Study of Radicalization, which advocates for better monitoring and enforcement of laws, says the Saudi government has failed to do enough to combat violence against Saudi women.
According to the report, Saudi Arabia has the world most severe domestic violence problem.
The International Center said the number of domestic violence cases is higher than the rest of the world, with Saudi women committing the majority of the attacks.
The report says Saudi women have committed more than 20 percent of all attacks, which include sexual assaults, threats of rape and threats of physical violence.