Tag Archives: Canada

Saudi Arabia: Number of prisoners of conscience in Saudi Arabia increases to 2,613

September 17, 2018

The number of prisoners of conscience in Saudi Arabia has increased to 2,613 detainees, according to Saudi human rights sources.

The Twitter account of Prisoners of Conscience concerned with the detainees in Saudi Arabia stated in a tweet that: “the number of prisoners of conscience in Saudi Arabia has increased to 2,613 detainees.”

The Twitter account added that “prominent lawyers, judges, academics, Muslim scholars, and media professionals” were among the detainees.

It is noteworthy that there are detainees in the Kingdom who have been imprisoned for more than 10 years either under sentences approved by the court against them or without charges and judicial rulings.

Since September 10, 2017, there have been hundreds of arrests in Saudi Arabia, despite human rights activists’ denunciation, and calls from international organisations such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International to immediately release detainees, and precedent calls to immediately disclose their whereabouts and allow them to communicate with their families and lawyers.

In May, the arrests reached human rights activists and feminist activists. They were accused by authorities of having connections with foreign parties as a result of their activity on women’s rights.

https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20180917-number-of-prisoners-of-conscience-in-saudi-arabia-increases-to-2613/

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/09/11/saudi-arabia-free-right-drive-activists

https://www.eurasiareview.com/12092018-saudi-arabia-should-free-right-to-drive-activists-says-hrw/

https://www.teenvogue.com/story/saudi-arabia-women-drivers-protest-friend-in-jail-op-ed

https://reliefweb.int/report/world/39th-session-human-rights-council-opening-statement-un-high-commissioner-human-rights

https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2018/09/16/574312/Over-2500-antiregime-activists-being-held-in-Saudi-detention-centers-Group

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samar_Badawi

https://www.hrw.org/fr/news/2018/09/11/arabie-saoudite-liberer-les-militantes-des-droits-des-femmes-detenues (FRANCAIS)

https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1134624/lautre-justin-trudeau.html (FRANCAIS)

http://www.elmundo.es/opinion/2018/09/17/5b9e54bb22601d75658b45d4.html (ESPANOL)

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Kenya/Canada: Why Miguna Miguna has sued government

September 5, 2018

Article Image

Former Nairobi gubernatorial aspirant Miguna Miguna at a past event. He has sued the government. (Photo/nation.co.ke)

Former Nairobi gubernatorial aspirant Miguna Miguna has sued the government for compensation over the damage police allegedly did to his property in Nairobi’s Runda estate during his arrest in February.

 

Miguna wants the government to foot the bills he used to repair his Runda house in Nairobi after it was allegedly destroyed by police.

According to Miguna, police officers destroyed his property during his arrest in February over his role in the swearing in of former Prime Minister Raila Odinga as the People’s President.

Through his lawyer Waikwa Wanyoike, Miguna claims that he used Sh250,000 to repair his house and wants immediate compensation.

The controversial lawyer now wants the government to pay him Sh274,000.

“We have filed the case in court and we will push the government to foot the costs my client used to repair his damaged house,” the lawyer told journalists at Milimani Law courts on Tuesday.

The lawyer said that the case is just among the many that he (Miguna) has filed against the Jubilee government.

Miguna was violently deported to Canada in April for the second time in a row over his role in Raila’s swearing in.

The controversial lawyer has however announced that he will be returning home after September 4.

https://hivisasa.com/posts/883-why-miguna-miguna-has-sued-government

https://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2018/09/04/miguna-wants-state-to-pay-for-repairs-of-his-damaged-house_c1812701

http://www.africanews.com/2018/08/24/miguna-miguna-set-to-return-to-kenya-after-september-4//

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miguna_Miguna

#BringMigunaBack

Kenya/Canada: I’ll Be Back To Kenya After September 4, Miguna Miguna

August 23, 2018

Controversial lawyer turned politician Miguna Miguna has announced that he’ll be back in the country after September 4 after spending three months in Canada.

In a tweet, Miguna attributed his troubles to President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga.

“For the cowards with low self-esteem celebrating the fact that  and destroyed my valid Kenyan passport and my house, abducted, detained and tortured me before forcefully removing me, mark this in permanent ink: I am coming back after September 4th,” tweeted Miguna.

Miguna’s troubles began when he controversially swore in Raila Odinga on January 31 after a hotly contested Presidential election which was nullified by the Supreme Court. Later, a repeat election was held in which the NASA coalition bolted out citing plot by Jubilee and IEBC to rig the polls.

Things turned from bad to worse when Uhuru and Raila reconciled in the famous handshake deal, seemingly leaving Miguna to his own. He was left with a choice to either follow the new unity pact or continue championing the Nasa dream. Miguna chose the latter, which saw him thrown out of the country twice on grounds that he was not a bona fide Kenyan citizen.

Miguna was deported to Canada on May 29 despite a court order directing the government to release him from detention at Jomo Kenyatta airport in Nairobi.

Miguna was taken out of Kenya via a Dubai-bound EK722 flight. Before being deported, Miguna said that he was harassed, drugged and dragged to a Dubai-bound flight. He was later on arrival at Dubai admitted in a Dubai hospital after travelling in an unconscious state to Dubai.

https://www.kahawatungu.com/2018/08/23/miguna-come-back-september/

https://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2018/08/23/ill-be-back-after-september-4-says-miguna_c1807203

https://www.kenyans.co.ke/news/32795-miguna-miguna-fly-back-home

https://www.pulselive.co.ke/news/miguna-miguna-announces-when-he-is-coming-back-to-kenya-id8759158.html

https://hivisasa.com/posts/1140-miguna-announces-new-return-date-to-kenya

https://nairobinews.nation.co.ke/news/miguna-sets-date-attempt-re-enter-kenya/

https://citizentv.co.ke/news/i-am-coming-back-deported-miguna-announces-return-to-kenya-210386/

https://allafrica.com/stories/201808230685.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miguna_Miguna

On September 3 and 4, 2018 from 9am, my advocates, led by Dr. Khaminwa and @waikwawanyoike will be seeking JUSTICE on my behalf and FINAL ORDERS against the Despots at the High Court, Milimani. You are free to attend. Re-Tweet, share and shame tyranny. #BringMigunaBack

(Dr. Miguna Miguna Facebook, 25/8/18)

Saudi Arabia/Canada: Outrageous ongoing detention of women’s rights defenders reaches 100 days

August 23, 2018

Image result for samar badawi

The ongoing arbitrary detention of several women’s rights defenders in Saudi Arabia is outrageous, Amnesty International said today, as three prominent activists reach 100 days of being held without charge.

Since May, at least 12 leading human rights activists in Saudi Arabia have been detained without charge. Loujain al-Hathloul, Iman al-Nafjan and Aziza al-Yousef were all imprisoned on 15 May and today (23 August) marks 100 days since their detention.

“It is absolutely outrageous that so many brave human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia are still being held without charge – apparently for simply speaking out against injustice,” said Samah Hadid, Amnesty International’s Middle East Director of Campaigns.

“They have been detained without charge and with no legal representation for more than three months. This must not go on any longer. The world cannot carry on looking the other way as this relentless persecution of those who stand up for human rights in Saudi Arabia continues.”

To mark the 100 day anniversary, Amnesty International is today mobilising its supporters worldwide to stand with the detained human rights defenders. As part of the campaign, Amnesty International supporters are gathering in multiple cities around the world to protest outside of Saudi Arabian embassies. They will be putting pressure on the Saudi Arabian authorities, as well as their own governments, to take action to secure the release of the women human rights defenders and all prisoners of conscience who have been detained solely for the peaceful exercise of their human rights in Saudi Arabia.

Loujain al-Hathloul, Iman al-Nafjan and Aziza al-Yousef have faced accusations in state-aligned media which include forming a “cell” and posing a threat to state security for their “contact with foreign entities with the aim of undermining the country’s stability and social fabric”. Amnesty International understands that the three women may be charged and tried by the country’s notorious counter-terror court, which has been used in other instances to try human rights defenders and deliver harsh prison sentences.

Earlier this month, two more prominent women human rights activists – Samar Badawi and Nassima al-Sada – were also detained. Others detained recently include women’s rights activists Nouf Abdulaziz and Maya’a al-Zahrani, and activists who have previously been persecuted for their human rights work, such as Mohammed al-Bajadi and Khalid al-Omeir. Hatoon al-Fassi, a prominent women’s rights activist and academic was also reportedly detained a few days after Saudi Arabia lifted the driving ban in June.

So far, a total of 12 human rights defenders have been detained: eight women and four men. The crackdown began shortly before Saudi Arabia lifted the ban on women driving in the country. Many of the activists detained campaigned for the right to drive and the end of the repressive male guardianship system in Saudi Arabia for many years.

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2018/08/saudi-arabia-outrageous-ongoing-detention-of-women-rights-defenders-reaches-100-days/?utm_source=FBPAGE-IS&utm_medium=social&utm_content=1735660571&utm_campaign=Amnesty&utm_term=News

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/08/21/saudi-prosecution-seeks-death-penalty-female-activist

http://rabble.ca/incahoots/2018/08/joint-statement-canadas-support-women-human-rights-defenders-saudi-arabia

https://www.amnesty.ca/news/%E2%80%8B%E2%80%8B%E2%80%8B%E2%80%8B%E2%80%8B%E2%80%8B%E2%80%8Bsaudi-arabia-appalling-plan-execute-female-activist-must-be-stopped

https://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/1934

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/politics/article-canada-criticizes-saudi-arabia-over-another-jailed-female-activist/?cmpid=rss

https://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-release-samar-badawi-and-other-womens-rights-advocates-letter/

https://www.lawsociety.ie/globalassets/documents/gazette/gazette-2018/sept-2018-gazette.pdf#page=19 (at page 16)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samar_Badawi

https://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/1935 (ARABIC)

http://www.lefigaro.fr/international/2018/08/22/01003-20180822ARTFIG00232-la-militante-saoudienne-israa-al-ghomgham-risque-la-decapitation.php (FRANCAIS)

https://www.lemonde.fr/idees/article/2018/08/17/les-valeurs-des-lumieres-n-appartiennent-pas-qu-a-l-homme-blanc_5343245_3232.html (FRANCAIS)

https://www.lavanguardia.com/politica/20180823/451413919665/ai-denuncia-que-tres-activistas-saudies-llevan-100-dias-en-prision-sin-cargos.html (ESPANOL)

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/saudi-arabien-israa-al-ghamgham-droht-die-enthauptung-a-1224434.html (DEUTSCH)

https://www1.folha.uol.com.br/mundo/2018/08/arabia-saudita-busca-pena-de-morte-para-cinco-ativistas-de-direitos-humanos.shtml (PORTUGUES)

https://www.ilpost.it/2018/08/23/attivista-politica-arabia-saudita-rischia-pena-di-morte/ (ITALIANO)

https://www.volkskrant.nl/nieuws-achtergrond/saoedi-arabie-eist-doodstraf-tegen-vijf-activisten-onder-wie-een-vrouw~b742c553/ (NEDERLANDS)

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Saudi Arabia/Canada: Arbitrary arrest and incommunicado detention of prominent women human rights defenders Samar Badawi and Nassima Al-Sadah

August 14, 2018

OMCT LogoOMCT logo

URGENT APPEAL – THE OBSERVATORY
SAU 005 / 0818 / OBS 103
Arbitrary detention /
Judicial harassment /
Incommunicado detention
Saudi Arabia
The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Saudi Arabia.
Description of the situation:
The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the arbitrary arrest and incommunicado detention of Ms. Samar Badawi[1] and Ms. Nassima Al-Sadah [2], two prominent women human rights defenders[3].
According to the information received, on July 30, 2018, security forces arrested Ms. Samar Badawi and Ms. Nassima Al-Sadah. No information is available about neither the circumstances nor the reasons of their arrests. The two human rights defenders are currently held in an unknown location and no information has been provided on their whereabouts and conditions of detention.
The Observatory recalls that over the past years, Ms. Samar Badawi has been repeatedly harassed, interrogated and arrested by the authorities for her human rights activities. Prior to her arrest, Ms. Samar Badawi appeared before the Bureau of Investigation and Prosecution, on February 15, 2017, regarding previous issues related to her human rights and civil activities, including women’s campaign against male guardians. On January 12, 2016, she was arrested by the Criminal Investigation Authority of Jeddah without any reason, and released on bail the next day. On December 2, 2014, while on her way to participate to the 16th European Union NGOs Forum on Human Rights in Brussels, Belgium, she was informed by a staff from the airport that she was under a travel ban, without any reason given or prior investigation.
The Observatory condems in the strongest terms the arbitrary arrest and incommunicado detention of Ms. Samar Badawi and Ms. Nassima Al-Sadah and urges the Saudi authorities to immediately disclose their whereabouts as well as to insure unhindered access to their families and lawyers.
The Observatory further recalls that ahead of the official lift of the driving ban the Saudi authorities launched a crackdown on human rights defenders – and especially women human rights defenders[4]– in the country. As of publication of this Urgent Appeal, Ms. Hatoon Al-Fassi, Ms. Nouf Abdulaziz, Ms. Mayya Al-Zahrani, Ms. Eman al-Nafjan , Ms. Aziza al-Youssef, Ms. Loujain al-Hathloul, Mr. Mohammed al-Rabiah, Mr. Mohamed al-Bejadi, Mr. Abdulaziz Al-Mesha’aland Mr. Ibrahim al-Mudaimeegh remain detained. While pro-governmental media outlets reported that they have been arrested under vague accusations of “suspicious contacts with foreign entities” and “financial support to enemies overseas”, no formal charges have yet been reportedly pressed against them. Moreover, they are reportedly all detained in solitary confinement, without access to their lawyers and they could only speak with their families once or twice since their arrests.

http://www.omct.org/human-rights-defenders/urgent-interventions/saudi-arabia/2018/08/d24993/

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/aug/12/saudi-arabia-spat-canada-mohammed-bin-salman-true-colours

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/badawi-saudi-trudeau-freeland-1.4785075

https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/geopolitics/article/2159135/saudi-arabia-brings-gun-knife-fight-canada-over-samar-badawi

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samar_Badawi

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waleed_Abulkhair

http://www.lefigaro.fr/international/2018/08/10/01003-20180810ARTFIG00216-rien-ne-va-plus-entre-le-canada-et-l-arabie-saoudite.php (FRANCAIS)

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waleed_Abu_al-Khair (FRANCAIS)

Saudi Arabia/Canada: Saudi Arabia expels Canadian ambassador after criticism of arrest of women’s rights activists

August 6, 2018

‘Any other attempt to interfere with our internal affairs from Canada means that we are allowed to interfere in Canada’s internal affairs’

Saudi Arabia has given the Canadian ambassador to the kingdom 24 hours to leave after Ottawa criticised the arrest of women’s rights activists in the ultra-conservative country.

The Saudi foreign ministry also said it was freezing “all new business” between the two states and had withdrawn its own ambassador.

“Any other attempt to interfere with our internal affairs from Canada means that we are allowed to interfere in Canada’s internal affairs,” it declared in an extraordinary statement on Sunday night.

The spat comes after Canada’s diplomatic department tweeted about the detention of two more activists in the Middle Eastern country on Friday, the latest in a crackdown which began in May.

“Canada is gravely concerned about additional arrests of civil society and women’s rights activists in Saudi Arabia, including Samar Badawi,” it posted. “We urge the Saudi authorities to immediately release them and all other peaceful human rights activists.”

Ms Badawi, arrested last week, is a lawyer and sister to blogger Raif Badawi, who was sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in prison in 2012 for criticising clerics. His wife Ensaf Haidar and three children now live in Quebec.

Her whereabouts, and those of Nassima al-Sadah, are currently unknown. Several other prominent female activists remain in prison near Jeddah, where no charges have been brought against them.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/saudi-arabia-canada-ambassador-women-rights-arrests-trade-freezes-a8478996.html

http://www.businessinsider.fr/us/saudi-arabia-canada-ambassador-arrests-rights-activists-2018-8

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/ensaf-haidar-raif-badawi-saudi-canada-relations-1.4775315

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2018/aug/02/un-sounds-alarm-saudi-human-rights-crackdown-arrests-samar-badawi-nassima-al-sadah

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2018/08/saudi-arabia-two-more-women-human-rights-activists-arrested-in-unrelenting-crackdown/

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/08/01/prominent-saudi-women-activists-arrested

https://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/raif-badawi-s-sister-arrested-in-saudi-arabia-amnesty-international-1.4038010

http://www.rcinet.ca/en/2018/08/02/canada-samar-badawi-arrest-saudi-arabia-freeland/

https://www.vox.com/world/2018/8/6/17656864/saudi-arabia-canada-ambassador-persona-non-grata-samar-badawi

http://www.euronews.com/2018/08/07/saudi-arabia-suspends-flights-to-toronto-as-diplomatic-spat-escalates-with-canada

https://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-hands-off-samar-badawi-letter/

https://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-loujain-al-hathloul-others-arbitrarily-detained-and-accused-letter/

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/article-canada-is-right-to-stand-up-for-samar-badawi/

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/us-declines-sides-heated-saudi-canadian-fight-human/story?id=57085103

https://lobelog.com/multiple-diplomatic-spats-with-saudi-arabia/

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-canada-eu/eu-seeks-details-from-saudi-arabia-on-women-human-rights-arrests-amid-canada-row-idUSKBN1KW0JX

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waleed_Abulkhair

http://www.france24.com/fr/20180806-riyad-expulse-ambassadeur-canada-critiques-droits-lhomme-badawi-arabie-saoudite (FRANCAIS)

https://ici.radio-canada.ca/nouvelle/1116070/larrestation-de-samar-badawi-suscite-des-reactions (FRANCAIS)

https://www.amnesty.fr/liberte-d-expression/petitions/liberte-pour-3-defenseures-en-arabie-saoudite (FRANCAIS – SIGNEZ LA PETITION!)

https://www.derstandard.de/story/2000084863817/samar-badawi-eine-frau-kaempft-gegen-die-verhaeltnisse (DEUTSCH)

https://www.dw.com/de/schwester-von-raif-badawi-in-saudi-arabien-festgenommen/a-44919296 (DEUTSCH)

https://www.ilpost.it/2018/08/06/arabia-saudita-canada-samar-badawi/ (ITALIANO)

https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/arabia-saudita-expulsa-diplomata-canadense-e-convoca-enviado-a-ottawa/ (PORTUGUES)

India/Canada: Gurpreet Singh: Surrey chapter of Trinjan celebrates advocate for family of Asifa Bano

June 29, 2018

Lawyer Deepika Singh Rajawat has faced threats after speaking up for the family of Asifa Bano, who was raped and killed in Indian-administered Kashmir.

An Indian woman who’s leading a fight for justice for the family of an eight-year-old victim of gang rape and murder in Kashmir was honoured at a community event in Surrey on June 24.

Deepika Singh Rajawat is legal counsel for the family of Asifa Bano, a Muslim nomad girl who was abducted by Hindu extremists in January. The horrific crime was part of a conspiracy to create fear in the minds of Muslims and force them to flee Kathua region in the Indian-administered area.

The body of Asifa, as she’s know by in India, was later found in a forest. The forensic evidence and police investigation established that she was held captive for several days inside a temple, sedated, and raped before being murdered.

The story did not end there. The arrests of the suspects, including a special police officer, sparked angry protests from those with allegiance to India’s ruling Hindu nationalist Bhartiya Janata Party.

They wanted those arrested to be released. So much so, they hoisted the Indian national flag during a march in support of the alleged perpetrators.

 

Rajawat has been facing threats on social media for standing up for Asifa, whose brutal rape and murder caused worldwide outrage. There have been angry protests in Canada, too.

In addition, Rajawat has also faced hostility from many male lawyers, including those defending the accused.

She was in Surrey to attend an annual community fair organized by Trinjan, a progressive group of women that’s been active in the South Asian community for many years. Amy Ghuman Sara, who has been instrumental behind Trinjan, is known for raising awareness for gender equality.

https://www.straight.com/news/1096511/gurpreet-singh-surrey-based-trinjan-celebrates-advocate-family-asifa-bano

https://www.theglobepost.com/2018/06/22/india-ruling-party-rape/

http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report-lawyer-and-activist-talib-hussain-who-led-agitation-in-kathua-rape-murder-accused-of-domestic-violence-2631329

http://www.livelaw.in/the-selective-battles-of-bar-council-of-india-ii/

The eight-year-old was gang-raped and murdered in what appears to have been an organized attempt to send a message to Muslim nomads.

Deepika Singh Rajawat speaks at about 55:00