A Saudi Arabian man was arrested after he was caught on camera forcing a child to smoke his cigarette in front of people.

The man put the lit cigarette into the mouth of the three-year-old toddler who coughs and tries to pull away as the man laughs at him.

According to Daily Mail UK, an investigation into the incident was launched after the video, filmed on a smartphone, went viral on social media and prompting the Attorney General of Saudi Arabia to order the man’s arrest.

The video begins as the child is sitting on the man’s knee when he puts the cigarette into the young boy’s mouth and seemingly coaches him to inhale.

The boy can be seen wincing and trying to pull away as he tastes smoke before rapidly coughing.

The man in the video and the crowd can be heard laughing in the uncomfortable 10-second clip.

Police used the social media video to identify the man and he was arrested on Saturday.

Police spokesman Ziad Al-Rikaiti said the man is in his 20’s, a Saudi Arabia national and a relative of the young boy.

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The boy’s father, who asked to remain anonymous, revealed that the man in the video was his cousin and claimed his intentions ‘were good’.

He father claimed that his child has a peculiar habit of picking up cigarette stubs from the ground and putting them in his mouth and his cousin wanted to teach him a lesson.

He said that they had tried to prevent the child from doing it but he ‘never let go of his fixation.’

‘My cousin wanted my son to taste the cigarettes so that he would know how disgusting they are and would never approach them,’ he told Okaz.

Jeddah lawyer Majed Garoub said the man could face serious charges, a heavy fineor even jail.

Mr Garoub said: ‘It is not permissible for anyone to abuse internet and social media platforms in a way that violates public decency and security.

‘The law protects children and the family, and in cases of any violations to children’s rights, it is the family affairs judge to assess the suitable punishment for the violator which is consistent with the best interest of the family.’

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