Late on Wednesday, Saudi authorities arrested seven male cross-dressers after a video they had appeared in earlier this year resurfaced online.  

According to Sabq news site, the footage was captured at Jeddah's Al Hamra Corniche. 

Even though it remains unclear when it was shot, the clip went viral on social media earlier this week, sending tweeps into a frenzy and ultimately leading to the arrests. 

The men, six Saudis and an expat, will now be transferred to public prosecution and are set to face legal consequences as cross-dressing is strictly illegal in the ultra-conservative kingdom. 

The footage is what led to the immediate arrests

News of the arrest also went viral on Saudi Twitter and while many were all for the detainment of the men, others were completely against it.

The footage had angered many

"Their public display is disgusting." 

Who shared offensive posts on Twitter

"I wish they'd make them work as waste collectors instead of those expat cleaners."

Many had called on authorities to arrest the men

"I wish they'd jail them until they become men."

And were relieved to hear they were detained

"We're grateful to authorities for making the arrests."

However, some were absolutely appalled by the arrests

"It's clear that this isn't only about cross-dressing... it's about identity, and arresting these human beings is certainly not the right way to help them." 

And felt they were uncalled for

"Until when, my nation? Until when will you arrest and jail people who didn't commit an actual crime? Our prisons are overcrowded for nothing and cost our government a fortune. I think authorities must focus on real crimes, including theft, kidnapping, and terrorism and not on these acts which aren't really crimes in the first place."

"I don't think they did anything wrong, it's their personal freedom"

"A subject that must be added to school curriculums: 'It's none of my business'"

"Reading posts on this hashtag convinces you that our population is regressive"

"And can never accept those who are different."

Not the first time a cross-dresser is arrested in Saudi

This certainly isn't the first time authorities crack down on cross-dressers in the kingdom. 

In 2017, human rights activists from around the world reported the murder of two transgender Pakistanis in Saudi Arabia. At the time, many said the men had also been attacked for cross-dressing. 

In 2016, the kingdom's police arrested a social media celebrity after accusing and charging him of cross-dressing online. 

In 2009, Human Rights Watch condemned the kingdom's officials for arresting 67 men after they were accused of wearing women's clothes. 

In their report on the matter, HRW said the move violated "basic human rights to privacy and freedom of expression," and also called on the kingdom's officials to immediately drop the charges against those detained.

In a statement issued on the matter at the time, Rasha Moumneh, researcher in the MENA division of HRW said:

"If the police in Saudi Arabia can arrest people simply because they don't like their clothes, no one is safe."