RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) – A Saudi newspaper says religious police have arrested 21 allegedly homosexual men and confiscated large amounts of alcohol.

Al-Medina daily says the Commission for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, which employs the religious police, was told Friday of a large gathering of young men at a rest house in Qatif, in eastern Saudi Arabia.

The paper says scores of men were initially arrested but only 21 remain in detention.

Homosexuality is seen as a sin in Islam and prohibited in Saudi Arabia and most other Muslim nations. In the conservative kingdom, the offense can be punished by flogging or prison.

AP-ES-06-21-08 0710EDT