Tag Archives: Saudi Arabia

China/The Philippines/Saudi Arabia/Turkey: Statement: Attacks on lawyers in China, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Turkey

July 2, 2019

Statement: Attacks on lawyers in China, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Turkey

On 1 July 2019, Lawyers for Lawyers together with Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada and the Human Rights Institute of the International Bar Association delivered a joint oral statement to the Human Rights Council on the attacks on lawyers in China, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. The statement was delivered during the 41st session of the Council.

 

The statement reads as follows:

Mr. President,

In countries where lawyers are imprisoned and prosecuted for defending rights, there is no equal access to justice or protection of rights.

In China, numerous human rights lawyers have been disappeared, arbitrarily imprisoned, tortured, or disbarred. In Saudi Arabia, lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair is one of hundreds of rights defenders arbitrarily convicted and detained. In Turkey, 311 lawyers have been arbitrarily convicted and detained since July 2016. In the Philippines, 40 jurists are among the “staggering number” of victims of extrajudicial killings since July 2016. Last month, eleven Special Procedures mandate holders called for an independent investigation of grave abuses in the Philippines.

We urge Council to:

Statement: Attacks on lawyers in China, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Turkey

Saudi Arabia/USA: Saudi lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair to receive 2019 ABA International Human Rights Award

June 21, 2019

Image result for waleed abu al-khair

The American Bar Association announced today that it will honor Saudi lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair with its 2019 ABA International Human Rights Award in recognition of his work to advance human rights and advocate for justice in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The award will be presented during a dinner at the ABA Annual Meeting in San Francisco, August 8, 7:30 p.m. at the Westin St. Francis Hotel.

The International Human Rights Award was established to honor and give public recognition to a lawyer, human rights luminary or international human rights organization that has made an exceptional contribution to the advancement of human rights outside of the United States. The award is given on behalf of the ABA Center for Human RightsSection of International LawSection of Civil Rights and Social JusticeSection of Litigation and Rule of Law Initiative.

Abu al-Khair is the founder of Monitor for Human Rights, one of only a few human rights organizations in Saudi Arabia, which he established in 2008, just a year after he began practicing law. As an attorney, Abu al-Khair dedicated his career to defending human rights and the right to freedom of expression, even after government authorities banned him in 2009 from representing specific defendants in courts. Abu al-Khair also used his legal background to advocate for an elected parliament, independent judiciary and other democratic reforms in Saudi Arabia.

https://www.americanbar.org/news/abanews/aba-news-archives/2019/06/saudi-lawyer-waleed-abu-al-khair-to-receive-2019-aba-internation/

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/15/saudi-arabia-5-years-activist-still-behind-bars

Abu al-Khair to receive ABA Award

https://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/2159

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

https://www.hrw.org/fr/news/2019/04/15/arabie-saoudite-cinquieme-annee-de-prison-pour-lactiviste-waleed-abu-al-khair (FRANCAIS)

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

Saudi Arabia/UK: Protest at Saudi Embassy to support detained rights lawyer Waleed Abu Al-Khair

April 26, 2019

5 Years On, Saudi Arabian Activist Waleed Abu al-Khair Still Behind Bars

https://www.facebook.com/events/428158044656205/

http://www.ludovictrarieux.org/uk-page3.callplt2015.htm

HRW calls on Saudi Arabia to release human rights lawyer

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

Saudi Arabia Executes 37 in One Day and Escalates Crackdown on Dissent

https://www.middleeasteye.net/opinion/saudi-arabia-executions-cruel-travesty-justice

HRW calls on Saudi Arabia to release human rights lawyer | RTNews24

HRW calls on Saudi Arabia to release human rights lawyer | RTNews24

http://www.ludovictrarieux.org/fr-page3.remplt2015.htm (FRANCAIS)

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

#FreeWaleed

Saudi Arabia: 5 Years On, Activist Still Behind Bars

April 15, 2019

2014_Saudi_WaleedAbuKhair

Saudi authorities should immediately release the prominent human rights lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair, who was sentenced in 2014 to 15 years in prison solely for his peaceful human rights advocacy, Human Rights Watch said today.

The Specialized Criminal Court (SCC), Saudi Arabia’s terrorism tribunal, convicted Abu al-Khair in July 2014 primarily for his comments to media outlets and tweets criticizing Saudi Arabia’s human rights record, especially the country’s harsh sentences against peaceful critics. In addition to his 15-year sentence, the court also issued a 15-year travel ban and imposed a fine of 200,000 Saudi Riyals (US$53,000).

 

“Stifling peaceful dissent with outrageous sentences has shown the Saudi government’s lack of commitment to serious political and civil reform,” said Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “A serious reform campaign, no matter how Saudi-funded public relations propagandists spin it, doesn’t entail locking up human rights defenders for 15 years for courageously speaking up.”
Abu al-Khair’s trial before the Specialized Criminal Court opened in October 2013. Following his fifth trial session on April 15, 2014, the interior minister issued a detention order, and Abu al-Khair has remained in detention since then. He is in al-Dhahban prison, north of Jeddah.
In its July 2014 decision, the court found Abu al-Khair guilty on six charges: “seeking to remove legitimate authority;” “harming public order in the state and its officials;” “inflaming public opinion and disparaging and insulting judicial authority;” “publicly slandering the judiciary, distorting the kingdom’s reputation, making international organizations hostile to the kingdom, and issuing unverified statements that harm the kingdom’s reputation and incite against it and alienate it;” “founding an unlicensed organization;” and violating Saudi Arabia’s anti-cybercrime law.
Abu al-Khair is a lawyer who has represented several others facing human rights violations as a legal advocate, and also founded Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia, a human rights organization that published information about human rights issues in the kingdom.

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/15/saudi-arabia-5-years-activist-still-behind-bars

HRW calls on Saudi Arabia to release human rights lawyer

https://www.ifex.org/saudi_arabia/2019/03/25/al-qahtani-mistreatment/

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

https://www.hrw.org/fr/news/2019/04/15/arabie-saoudite-cinquieme-annee-de-prison-pour-lactiviste-waleed-abu-al-khair?fbclid=IwAR39PqALljbp4s6mak76nEPU-aPkyK-qjQEXest7mqYKNozoB-xzgLm1e_8 (FRANCAIS)

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

Image result for waleed abu al-khair

Saudi Arabia: New wave of arrests targeting human rights community must stop!

April 11, 2019

On 09 April 2019, the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) received a list of at least 13 names of human rights defenders, including women’s rights activists, who are confirmed to have been arrested in Saudi Arabia this month. The Saudi authorities carried out a new wave of arrests of writers and social media bloggers who were previously engaged in public discourse on reforms.

Since 04 April, many Saudi activists and bloggers, including academics, have been tweeting intensively about this new crackdown. The international community is still struggling to reason with, put pressure on and hold Saudi Arabia accountable for its human rights violations. This includes the arbitrary arrest and torture of women human rights defenders, including prominent women’s rights activist Loujain Al-Hathloul, who has yet to be released on bail as expected yet. The Saudi authorities continue to ignore, deny and act with utmost impunity and intransigence.

GCHR’s source (who must be kept anonymous for their safety) stated that “these arrests were orchestrated since February and linked to their support for the women activists’ families.” GCHR believes that Saudi Arabia is exerting every effort to shut down civic space, silence the human rights community and exterminate the feminist movement in the kingdom.

The list of names includes:

  1. Salah Al-HaidarAziza Al-Yousef’s son and a US citizen
  2. Bader Al-Ibrahim, Saudi-US citizen (writer & physician)
  3. Mohammed Al-Sadiq (writer)
  4. Thumar Al-Marzouqi (writer)
  5. Khadijah Al-Harbi (feminist writer), the wife of Thumar Al-Marzouqi, pregnant
  6. Fahad Abalkhail (an activist who previously supported the women driving) https://youtu.be/qQkXXicGpso
  7. Abdullah Al-Dehailan (writer)
  8. Naif Al-Hendas (writer)
  9. Ayman Al-Drees (writer and translator)
  10. Moqbel Al-Saqqar (novelist)
  11. Abdullah Al-Shehri (lawyer)
  12. Redha Al-Bori (blogger and writer)
  13. Ali Al-Saffar (writer)

Shaikhah Al-Urf, the wife of the detained lawyer Abdullah Al-Shehri, has also been suspected as detained because of lost communication with her, but her arrest couldn’t be confirmed

Anas Al-Mazrou, a lecturer at King Saud university, has also been detained after posting a question in a public panel at Riyadh Book Fair last month on the whereabouts of the jailed human rights and women activists.

The newly-detained activists and human rights defenders are being held incommunicado, while their families remain without any contact with them and unaware of their whereabouts and/or the charges against them, to date.

https://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/2111

https://www.ifex.org/saudi_arabia/2019/04/14/rights-defenders-arrested/

https://www.bignewsnetwork.com/news/260460569/saudi-arabia-arrests-at-least-13-more-human-rights-defenders?utm_source=feeds.bignewsnetwork.com&utm_medium=referral

Saudi Arabia: Nomination of Waleed Abu al-Khair for the 2019 ABA International Human Rights Award | Joint Letter

March 29, 2019

Waleed Abu al-Khair, unlawfully imprisoned for his work as a human  rights lawyer since 15 April 2014, has been nominated for the 2019
American Bar Association Human Rights Award jointly by LRWC, Lawyers for  Lawyers, Union Internationale des Avocats and the Law Society of England  and Wales.

JOINT NOMINATION LETTER

In accordance with the request of the American Bar Association (ABA) for nominees for the 2019 ABA International Human Rights Award, the following organizations —Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada (LRWC), Lawyers for Lawyers (L4L), the Law Society of England and Wales (LSEW) and the Union Internationale des Avocats (UIA) —recommend and nominate human rights lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair of Saudi Arabia for the 2019 ABA International Human Rights Award.

Waleed Abu al-Khair is one of the best-known advocates for democratic and human rights reform in Saudi Arabia.  He has used the written and spoken word coupled with his legal knowledge to fearlessly advocate for reforms to improve the lives of all in Saudi Arabia by calling on the Government of Saudi Arabia to allow its citizens to enjoy internationally protected rights to freedom of expression, association, assembly and the right to participate directly and indirectly in public affairs.  He has done this work through writing and public speaking, by representing causes and clients unpopular with the Government of Saudi Arabia, by providing a safe space for peaceful discussion of issues of public concern and by providing people with an example of responsible advocacy for justice for all.  At the risk of his own personal and professional safety and security, Waleed Abu al-Khair persisted in using his training and skills as a lawyer to be an outspoken advocate for an elected parliament, an independent judiciary, a constitutional monarchy and recognition of internationally protected human rights. He has also advocated on behalf of prisoners of conscience and written many articles identifying human rights abuses and the need for legal reform. He recommended reliance on the rule of law and proper legal procedures to effect reform and settle disputes and differences of opinion and never advocated or used violence as a means of opposition.

https://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-nomination-of-waleed-abu-al-khair-for-the-2019-aba-international-human-rights-award-joint-letter/

https://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-waleed-abu-al-khair-update-wgad/

https://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-arbitrary-detention-of-samar-badawi-working-paper/

https://www.ifex.org/saudi_arabia/2019/03/25/al-qahtani-mistreatment/

https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/434752-senate-dems-petition-saudi-king-to-release-dissidents-us-citizen

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

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

Image result for waleed abu al-khair

Saudi Arabia: Saudi law professor arrested for criticising kingdom’s human rights record: Report

March 28, 2019

Professor denounces Saudi Arabia’s detention of rights activists, before he himself is arrested

Saudi Arabian authorities arrested a law professor who teaches at King Saud University in the capital Riyadh, hours after he criticised the kingdom’s human rights record, media outlet Arabi21 reported.

Speaking at the Riyadh International Book Fair on Thursday, Anas al-Mazrouee denounced Saudi Arabia’s arrest and detention of women’s rights and other human rights activists.

He criticised the kingdom’s crackdown on dissent, calling out the government for claiming it champions women’s rights while it was arresting women activists.

Abdullah al-Ouda – son of detained Saudi cleric Salman al-Ouda, who has been held since  2017 – said that the professor was arrested shortly after giving his talk at the fair.

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/saudi-law-professor-arrested-criticising-kingdoms-human-rights-record-report

https://www.scholarsatrisk.org/report/2019-03-28-king-saud-university/

https://www.merdeka.com/dunia/kritik-kerajaan-soal-pelanggaran-ham-dosen-hukum-ditangkap-otoritas-saudi.html (INDONESIAN)

http://voa-islam.com/read/world-news/2019/03/29/62890/profesor-hukum-saudi-ditangkap-beberapa-jam-setelah-kritik-catatan-ham-kerajaan/#sthash.wHqOSnYM.dpbs (INDONESIAN)