20yo woman drowns in Dubai after father refuses to let lifeguards ‘touch & dishonor her’

© Carlos Barria
A man who prevented Dubai lifeguards from saving his drowning 20-year-old daughter, saying he would rather she died than be dishonored by being touched by male lifeguards, has been arrested and charged in the United Arab Emirates.

The man, an expat from an undisclosed Asian country who has not been identified by police, took his wife and children to the beach for a picnic. His daughter was having fun swimming, when she suddenly got into difficulty in the water and screamed for help.

“Two [lifeguards] were at the beach, and they rushed to help the girl.” Lt. Col. Ahmed Burqibah, deputy director of Dubai police’s search and rescue department, told Emirates 24/7.

”However, there was one obstacle, which prevented them from reaching the girl and helping her… the belief of this Asian man, who considered that if these men touched his daughter, then this would dishonor her. It cost him the life of his daughter.”

According to Lt. Col. Burqibah, the father – a tall and strong man –  physically prevented the lifeguards from reaching his daughter.

“He started pulling and [holding back] the [lifeguards] and got violent with them. He told them that he prefers his daughter being dead than being touched by a strange man.”

By the time the father had stopped fighting with the lifeguards, the young woman's heart had stopped beating.

“She died unfortunately, at a time when she had a chance to live, especially [since the lifeguards] were so close to her to [pulling] her out of the water,” Burqibah said. “This is one of the incidents [that] I cannot forget. It shocked me and many others who were involved in the case.”

The young woman’s father was later arrested by Dubai police and charged in connection with the incident.