Riyadh court holds Eleven female Saudi activists for trial.
Riyadh court holds Eleven female Saudi Arabian activists for trial on unstated charges relating to their human rights work and connection with foreign journalists and diplomats.
Riyadh court debarred foreign diplomats from accessing the court room and were escorted outside the building regardless of imploring the authorities to witness the trial, which was faced with criticism in the north.
The detained took responsibility for Coordinating activity to threaten the security, stability and social peace of the kingdom, as was previously declared by The Saudi Arabian public prosecutor’s office.
After evaluating the charge sheets for two of the detainees in the first trial session in March by Human Rights Watch, their charges relates to human rights work, in specific promoting women’s rights and putting an end for the Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system. Other rights groups stated that some of the charges fall under an article of the kingdom’s cybercrime law enforcing jail sentences of up to five years.
The rights campaigner Loujain al-Hathloul, the university professor Hatoon al-Fassi and the blogger Eman Al Nafjan were among the arrested in a campaign that began in May 2018, all of the above mentioned involved in campaigns for the right of women to drive.
Women’s families and rights groups stated that some of those detained in the crackdown were put through physical and psychological torture in which means of torturer including electric shocks, flogging and sexual abuse were enforced.
A call on Riyadh to free the activists were set by three dozen countries, including all 28 EU members, Canada and Australia. During latest visits to Riyadh, both the British foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, and the US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo raised the issue of the detainees.
An Alliance of nine leading Democratic senators, including Dianne Feinstein and Elizabeth Warren, wrote a public letter last week calling on King Salman for immediate and unconditioned release of a number of prisoners held on “questionable charges related to their activism”, citing many of the women currently on trial.
It stays unclear if Riyadh will bend to international pressure- with the detainees possibly getting pardons- or go on with cruel sentences which will expose the boundaries of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s promises to modernize.
There detention took place weeks before a ban on women driving cars in the conservative kingdom was lifted last June under endeavors to relax social rules and uplift the economy.
In an attempt to stamp out possible oppositions, the crown arrested dozens of other activists, intellectuals and cleric in the past two years.
In other incident, the crown prince has courted the west to back up the aspiring economic and social reforms, but his reputation was
The crown prince has courted the west to support ambitious economic and social reforms, but this was gravely blemished when Saudi agents assassinated the journalist Jamal Khashoggi last October at the kingdom’s Istanbul consulate, igniting an international uproar.