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The police in United Arab Emirates (UAE) have warned against wearing vendetta masks while celebrating the 41st national day of the UAE. Any person who wears this mask would face legal questionnaires, as the mask refers to opposition to the government and authorities.
According to the police, wearing this mask or any similar symbol violates the security of the state. It is considered a criminal offense and punishable by law, even for those who don’t know what this mask might refer to.
In a Gulf news website, a Dubai police official said “Using any symbol that insults the country or instigates unrest against its system is not allowed. We urge citizens to celebrate using other symbols such as national flags, slogans or photos that are more appropriate to the happy occasion of National Day.”
The vendetta mask, also called Guy Fawkes mask, was designed to hide Guy Fawkes. Guy Fawkes was the principle of the group that failed to bomb the British House of Lords in London in 1605. In the end he was captured and hanged in Westminster January 31,1606.
Every November 5, the people in the UK, New Zealand, Canada and South Africa celebrate Guy Fawkes Night for his failure to bomb the British House of Lords.
The advertisements to sell this mask in the UAE have shown up in some online stores featuring number 41 and the UAE flag colors, red, black, green and white. The price of the mask is about $20 USD. After the police call, most of the advertisers have withdrawn the advertisements from the online sites, especially in the UAE-based web sites and blogs.
Vendetta is a Latin word used in English and other languages which means revenge. This mask was so popular during the Arab spring demonstrations in Tunisia, Yemen, Egypt and Libya revolutions. In these countries, many protesters used to wear these masks to show their maximum discontent on their government while calling to overthrow it.
This year, the UAE is celebrating the 41 anniversary of being united and independent. The UAE is a confederation of 7 sheikhdoms which were united on December 2, 1971. Sometimes they call it union day rather than national day.
The capital of UAE is Abu Dhabi, while Dubai is the commercial capital and the most famous city in the country. The other sheikhdoms are Sharjah, Ajman , Umm al-Quwain , Ras al-Khaimah and Fujairah.