An expatriate and his friend have lost their appeal against a one-month jail sentence for allegedly kissing in public in the city of Dubai.
The Muslim emirate’s appeals court upheld the prison sentence handed down to Ayman Najafi, an expatriate living in Dubai, and his companion, tourist Charlotte Adams.
In November, the couple were arrested after a local woman said she had seen them kissing in a restaurant in the Jumeirah Beach Residence area.
They responded by saying that they kissed only on the cheek, which is allowed as a greeting under local laws.
Both were also accused of drinking alcohol, to which they pleaded guilty.
In January the two were convicted and sentenced but have been on bail since their arrest, lawyer Khalaf al-Hosani said.
The couple could take their case to the higher cassation court but "the hope is dim" of having their conviction overruled, Mr Hosani said.
Their passports are being held by Dubai authorities in the meantime.
Dubai remains a popular tourist and expatriate hotspot, attracting around 1.1 million British nationals last year.
More than 100 million British expatriates live in the emirate state.
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