Police in Riyadh have arrested Saudi Salem Al-Zaharani after a video capturing him sexually abusing a domestic worker went viral online, Sabq news site reported

The arrest came just hours after the offender posted the video on social media on Wednesday. 

While it remains unclear when the incident happened, the footage sparked outrage on Twitter, leading thousands to call on authorities to take immediate action against Al-Zaharani. 

Many also pointed out that the young man had previously appeared in several Snapchat videos deemed "offensive," and "inappropriate." 

*The video of the assault is available online but we chose not to share it in line with our ethical standards.

News of the arrest is now circulating online

"Riyadh police arrest the young man who sexually assaulted a domestic worker." 

The arrest comes after the footage sparked outrage on Twitter

"It's my right as a Saudi national to call for the arrest of this man. His actions defame our country."

People are hailing Riyadh police for taking swift action

"Great news, God bless them for arresting him."

Many hit back at those playing into the victim-blaming narrative

"People say a woman who's sexually abused is to blame for being assaulted but this is just wrong. There are regressive, monstrous people who commit such actions regardless of what a woman does or doesn't do. I hope the punishment this young man receives is extremely strict." 

"There's a crucial need for the anti sexual harassment law. We don't want individual solutions, but ones that target all offenders"

In September, King Salman issued a royal decree calling upon the kingdom's interior minister to draft a law that criminalizes sexual harassment and enforces penalties on perpetrators. 

Many are now calling on authorities to speed up the process of imposing the legislation, which is currently being drafted by Saudi authorities. 

Not an isolated case

In recent months, several cases of sexual abuse targeting domestic workers were reported in countries across the Arab world. 

These include the case of a Filipino domestic worker who was sexually assaulted by an Egyptian man in Riyadh. The man was later arrested by Saudi authorities. 

In another case of horrific sexual abuse, an Emirati man was tried in court after it was proven he had raped and sexually assaulted a Filipino domestic worker who worked for him. 

Speaking to StepFeed at the time, Lina, a Dubai-based activist who works with abused domestic workers, explained that as shocking as the most recent reported cases are, they certainly aren't isolated.

"I don't think we'll ever have an accurate number of cases when it comes to domestic workers who are sexually harassed in the Arab world and the Gulf in specific. I know for a fact that there are hundreds, many of which go unreported," she said.

Domestic workers most vulnerable to sexual assault in the region

According to Human Rights Watch, "the experiences of less privileged groups - particularly domestic workers - including the pervasive threat of sexual assault, have largely remained invisible."

Speaking to several victims of sexual assault in the Gulf region, HRW unveiled shocking stories. 

Several women explained that their abusers often became violent when they rejected their advances, threatening to dismiss them or "make false claims to their wives that the women had seduced them."