Celeb News

Georgia Love and Lee Elliot defend travelling to Saudi Arabia after copping backlash

''By tourists being here it has to be more accountable.''

By Faye Couros
Georgia Love and Lee Elliot have defended travelling to Saudi Arabia receiving backlash for visiting the middle eastern country.
It's the couple's first trip since the borders opened, and fans of the couple criticised them for supporting a nation denounced for violating human rights.
The Bachelorette alums shared pictures posing in front of a house with the official tourism bureau of Saudi Arabia tagged in the post.
Journalist Peter Ford tweeted his disapproval of the couple's decision.
He retweeted a GB News story about Saudi Arabia executing 81 convicts in a day and wrote, "This is the country Georgia Love accepted a free trip to visit. Of the 81, you can be sure there is a disproportionate number of women, gays and possibly journalists. Did you really need a freebie trip that badly Georgia."
Lee issued a lengthy statement to defend their decision. (Image: Instagram)
Fans and followers of Lee and Georgia scathingly commented underneath their posts.
One wrote, "*Tourists that are not LGBTQI…a country that should not be promoted!," and another shared, "As gorgeous as Saudi Arabia looks, their treatment and perception of women as a whole is still quite dire, although I know there has been some improvements. I will be interested to hear what your experience s like as a female visiting the country."
Hours after flashing their trip on Instagram, Lee was forced to defend their holiday by revealing they're "not being paid" and don't support their human rights violations.
"We truly hear and understand what some of you are saying and where you're coming from on our decision to come to Saudi Arabia, but the world is changing for the better and Saudi along with it.," the 40-year-old wrote on his Instagram Stories.
"We thought long and hard about coming and did a lot of research before we did. Saudi has changed a lot in recent years (we were not allowed here two years ago. Women could not drive nor work – none of these things are the case now)."
"Did you really need a freebie trip that badly Georgia." (Image: Instagram)
He continued, "We strongly believe by Saudi opening up to the rest of the world and by tourists being here it has to be more accountable.
"We are on a trip organised and run solely by women who are here on the ground leading the tour with us. Locals included. This is a big reason we felt comfortable to come."
In his second post, he praised the locals and made a firm stance against the country's human rights failures.
"Every local we have come across has been wonderful, kind, and very grateful to be opening their country to tourism as the times change, and proud of the changes their country is making.
"We do not in any way endorse behaviours of the past or human rights violations that have occurred in this country.
"We do not in any way endorse behaviours of the past or human rights violations that have occurred in this country." (Image: Instagram)
"We are also not being paid to be here. We are here for ourselves to experience and see a different country and culture as that for us is what travel is all about. We want to see and experience as much of the world as we can – This includes all cultures and religions, whether we follow them, agree with them or not," he concluded.
Georgia reposted his statement on her socials and they have deleted their Saudi Arabia travel posts.
  • undefined: Faye Couros