Tag Archives: Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia/Canada: Two exceptional human rights defenders honoured by Law Society

February 23, 2017

Law Society Treasurer Paul B. Schabas congratulates the recipients of the Law Society’s 2016 Human Rights Award: Cindy Blackstock, PhD (left), and Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada Executive Director Gail Davidson (right), who accepted the award on behalf of human rights defender and activist Waleed Abu al-Khair, who has been imprisoned in Saudi Arabia since 2014 for his human rights activities. Dr. Blackstock and Abu al-Khair both received the award at a special ceremony in Toronto on February 22,  in recognition of their outstanding contributions to the advancement of human rights and the promotion of the rule of law provincially, nationally and internationally. (CNW Group/The Law Society of Upper Canada)

The Law Society of Upper Canada honoured two exceptional human rights advocates last night at Osgoode Hall.

Human rights defenders Waleed Abu al-Khair and Cindy Blackstock, PhD, were recognized for their outstanding contributions to the advancement of human rights and the promotion of the rule of law provincially, nationally and internationally.

“We are extremely pleased to honour Dr. Blackstock and Mr. Abu al-Khair, both of whom have shown remarkable courage and conviction in their tireless efforts to promote human rights, said Law Society Treasurer Paul B. Schabas at the evening ceremony. “Through Dr. Blackstock’s efforts to address systemic discrimination of First Nations children, she has made a significant and lasting contribution that will have a powerful impact on generations of First Nations children,” he said. “Mr. Abu al-Khair has sacrificed a great deal. In honouring him with the Law Society’s Human Rights Award, we say to him, and to others like him, your sacrifice does not go unrecognized,” said Treasurer Schabas.

Recipient Waleed Abu al-Khair, 37, has been arbitrarily imprisoned in Saudi Arabia since April 15, 2014. He is a prominent human rights lawyer and activist and is the founder of the organization the Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia. He has worked tirelessly to defend human rights and the rule of law for all — in the face of extreme adversity and at the cost of his own freedom. Gail Davidson, Executive Director of Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada, accepted the award on his behalf.

“Waleed began practising law in 2007 and since then 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 to allow its citizens to enjoy internationally protected rights such as rights to freedom of expression, association, assembly and the right to participate in public affairs. He has also advocated passionately for the equal rights of women and on behalf of prisoners of conscience,” Davidson said.

http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/two-exceptional-human-rights-defenders-honoured-by-law-society-614639784.html

http://www.lawsocietygazette.ca/news/extraordinary-night-for-human-rights-and-the-rule-of-law/

http://www.newswire.ca/fr/news-releases/deux-defenseurs-exceptionnels-des-droits-de-la-personne-honores-par-le-barreau-614640034.html (FRANCAIS)

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Saudi Arabia: Imprisoned Activist Waleed Abu al-Khair Earns Human Rights Award | Human Rights Watch Press Release

February 18, 2017

Saudi Arabia: Imprisoned Activist Earns Human Rights Award
Waleed Abu al-Khair Serving 15 Years for Peaceful Activism

(Beirut, February 20, 2017) – The Law Society of Upper Canada’s selection of the imprisoned Saudi human rights lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair for its 2016 Human Rights Award highlights Saudi Arabia’s brutal repression of peaceful activists and dissidents, Human Rights Watch said today. Saudi authorities should immediately and unconditionally release Abu al-Khair, who was sentenced in 2014 to 15 years in prison for his peaceful human rights advocacy, so that he can attend the award ceremony in Toronto on February 22, 2017.

Saudi courts have convicted at least 20 prominent peaceful activists and dissidents since 2011. Many, like Abu al-Khair, have faced sentences as long as 10 or 15 years on broad, catch-all charges – such as “breaking allegiance with the ruler” or “participating in protests” – that do not constitute recognizable crimes.

“Every day Waleed Abu al-Khair spends in prison compounds the injustice Saudi Arabia has imposed on him and his family,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Continued recognition of Abu al-Khair’s human rights work demonstrates that Saudi Arabia’s repression of peaceful activists and dissidents generates wide notice and criticism.”

Abu al-Khair has been one of Saudi Arabia’s leading human rights advocates for years.

http://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-imprisoned-activist-waleed-abu-al-khair-earns-human-rights-award-human-rights-watch-press-release/

https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/02/20/saudi-arabia-imprisoned-activist-earns-human-rights-award

http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/23777

https://www.hrw.org/ar/news/2017/02/20/300236 (العربية)

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

http://www.omct.org/human-rights-defenders/urgent-interventions/saudi-arabia/2017/02/d24209/

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

Saudi Arabia: Help us #FreeWaleed !

February 16, 2017

Waleed Abu al-Khair is a prominent human rights lawyer and activist in Saudi Arabia and the founder of the Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia. He has worked tirelessly to defend human rights and the rule of law for all – in the face of extreme adversity and at the cost of his own freedom. Currently he is imprisoned for 15 years in Saudi Arabia, and unless he is released will be unable to travel to Toronto to receive the 2016 Law Society of Upper Canada Human Rights Award on February.  TAKE ACTION to help free Waleed in time for the ceremony on February 22nd by tweeting:

3 int’l human rights awards can’t be wrong! Release lawyer @WaleedAbulkhair to receive @LawsocietyLSUC award on Feb 22nd in Toronto
Tweet: 3 int'l human rights awards can't be wrong! Release lawyer @WaleedAbulkhair to receive @LawsocietyLSUC award on Feb 22nd in Toronto

Release @WaleedAbulkhair to receive @LawsocietyLSUC human rights award  – join LRWC in solidarity with @AmnestyNow , UIA and @TheLawSociety
Tweet: Release @WaleedAbulkhair to receive @LawsocietyLSUC human rights award  - join LRWC in solidarity with @AmnestyNow , UIA and @TheLawSociety

https://www.amnesty.ca/blog/help-us-freewaleed

Saudi Arabia: LRWC Requests Support of Petition to Release Waleed Abu al-Khair to Receive Law Society of Upper Canada 2016 Human Rights Award | Letter

January 17, 2017

See original image

Lawyer’s Rights Watch Canada (LRWC) writes to ask you to take action to support our request that the Government of Saudi Arabia immediately take all steps necessary to release Waleed Abu al-Khair from prison and enable him to travel to Canada to receive the Law Society of Upper Canada 2016 Human Rights Award at the award ceremony on 22 February 2017 in Toronto Canada.

Waleed Abu al-Khair

Waleed Abu al-Khair is a world renowned human rights lawyer, democracy advocate and founder of Monitor for Human Rights in Saudi Arabia (MHRSA), currently imprisoned in Dhahban Central Prison in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.  He was arrested 14 April 2014 and sentenced on 6 July 2014 to 15 years in prison, a consecutive 15 year travel ban and a 200,000SAR fine.

Calls for the immediate release of Waleed Abu al-Khair

The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) in October 2015 recommended that Saudi Arabia immediately release Waleed Abu al-Khair after designating his trial as unfair and his detention as arbitrary and in contravention of Articles 9, 10, 19 and 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. [1]  An additional Complaint to the WGAD, filed jointly by LRWC and other international human rights organizations on 15 April 2015,[2] has not, to our knowledge, yet been considered.

http://www.lrwc.org/saudi-arabia-lrwc-requests-support-of-petition-to-release-waleed-abu-al-khair-to-receive-law-society-of-upper-canada-2016-human-rights-award-letter/

Saudi Arabia: Immediately and Unconditionally Release Waleed Abu al-Khair | Letter

December 20, 2016

Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada (LRWC) is a committee of lawyers and others who promote international human rights and the rule of law through advocacy, education and research. LRWC campaigns for lawyers and other human rights defenders in jeopardy because of their human rights advocacy. LRWC is a non-governmental organization in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (UN).

Waleed Abu al-Khair has been selected as a recipient of the Law Society of Upper Canada 2016  Human Rights Award in recognition of his,

extraordinary contributions to the advancement of human rights and promotion of democracy and the rule of law in Saudi Arabia over the course of his career as an advocate, made at high personal cost, [which] demonstrate the highest ideals of the legal profession.

The Law Society of Upper Canada, in a letter from Paul B. Schabas, Treasurer of the Law Society of Upper Canada, [1] has invited Waleed Abu al-Khair to attend in person to accept the award at the award ceremony on 22 February 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

LRWC asks the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (Saudi Arabia) to comply with its international law obligations and to:

  1. Immediately and unconditionally release Waleed Abu al-Khair;
  2. Remove the travel ban prohibiting Waleed Abu al-Khair from leaving Saudi Arabia for 15 years after his release and vacate the SAR 200,000 fine; and,
  3. Ensure all other measures necessary to allow and enable Waleed Abu al-Khair to attend in person to accept the Law Society of Upper Canada 2016 Human Rights Award at the ceremony on 22 February 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Release of Waleed Abu al-Khair

Waleed Abu al-Khair was arrested on 14 April 2014 and subsequently sentenced to 15 years in prison, a travel ban of 15 years following completion of the prison sentence and a fine of SAR 200,000.  He had been charged under the Penal Law for Crimes of Terrorism and its Financing with a variety of vague and over-broad offenses based on and aimed at, sanctioning his peaceful advocacy for recognition of human and democratic rights.  The charges were either too vague to allow avoidance or defense or did not relate to criminal activity.  Examples of the former were, ‘seeking to discredit state legitimacy’ and ‘preparing, storing and sending what would prejudice public order’ – of the latter, ‘running an unauthorized association and being its chairman speaking on its behalf and issuing statements and communicating through it.’

Leading members of the international human rights community have concluded his imprisonment lacks any legal justification, is arbitrary and constitutes a violation of all applicable international law provisions binding on Saudi Arabia.  This conclusion was confirmed by the 2015 Opinion of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.

http://www.lrwc.org/11162-2/

http://www.lrwc.org/canada-urge-saudi-arabia-to-immediately-release-waleed-abu-al-khair-letter/

Saudi Arabia: Issa al-Marzoq al-Nukhaifi, éminent avocat des droits de l’homme et rédacteur en chef du journal électronique al-Waqa, arrêté par les forces de sécurité dans la région de Jizan

le 20 décembre, 2016

Avant d’être arrêté, Issa al-Nukhaifi avait été convoqué à comparaître par les autorités. Le 6 décembre 2016, il avait a publié le tweet suivant: «Je n’ai pas volé des trillions, je n’ai pas acheté de yacht et je n’ai pas acheté d’avion. Je n’ai pas de maison pour mes enfants. Je n’ai pas un emploi après avoir pris mon travail et même le paiement du loyer de ma maison est en retard alors pourquoi une convocation? “


Issa al-Nukhaifi est un avocat et militant social qui a protesté contre la politique du gouvernement visant à déplacer des familles des frontières saoudo-yéménites sous couvert de mesures de sécurité sans compensation adéquate.


Issa al Nukhaifi avait été précédemment arrêté en septembre 2012 et condamné par le Tribunal pénal spécial à trois ans d’emprisonnement le 29 avril 2013. Il a été libéré le 6 avril 2016 après avoir purgé trois ans et huit mois de prison. Il aurait été torturé et placé en isolement après avoir entamé une grève de la faim pour demander justice. Il a été accusé de plusieurs chefs d’accusation, notamment de contester le pouvoir judiciaire, d’accuser les institutions de l’État d’avoir manqué à leurs devoirs, participé à la sédition en incitant et organisant des manifestations, en stockant et en envoyant des informations préjudiciables à l’ordre public

(source IDHAE Facebook)

http://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/244 (ENGLISH)

http://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/1451 (ARABIC)

Saudi Arabia: Waleed Abu Al Khair

le 5 décembre, 2016

waleed_abu_alkhair

Pays d’origine : Arabie Saoudite

Profession : Avocat

Causes défendues : Droits de l’Homme, fondateur de « Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia ».

Waleed Abu Al Khair est un avocat militant et défenseur des droits de l’Homme saoudien, né en 1979 à Djeddah. Il débute sa carrière en 2007, et acquiert une certaine notoriété lorsqu’il défend, en 2009, les victimes des grandes inondations de Djeddah. La même année, il crée « Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia », une association de promotion et de défense des droits de l’Homme.

Waleed a défendu de nombreuses victimes de violations des droits de l’Homme devant les tribunaux saoudiens, et a régulièrement plaidé en faveur de réformes allant dans le sens d’une prise en compte accrue des droits fondamentaux en Arabie Saoudite.

https://oiadblog.wordpress.com/2016/12/05/waleed-abu-al-khair/