MENA Rights Defenders Call on Saudi to Release Rights Defender Samar Badawi
Saudi Arabia: Human rights defender Samar Badawi arrested
Human rights defenders in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) call on the government of Saudi Arabia to release prominent human rights defender Samar Badawi immediately. Human rights defenders in MENA and the undersigned individuals express their deep concern and condemnation of the arrest of Badawi on 12 January 2016.
Badawi had received a call from the security services about a meeting that she conducted, but was unaware of its rationale or any specific charges that may have been made against her. After her appearance in front of the designated authorities in Jeddah, she was arrested, then transferred to Dhahban prison, located in the city of Jeddah. It is believed that Badawi’s arrest might be based on allegations of her running the personal twitter account of Waleed Abu Al-Khair, the detained lawyer and prominent human rights defender, who is her husband.
The account published yesterday an image that was leaked from his prison in Malaz, Riyadh.
We call on the Saudi authorities for the immediate release of Badawi, for we believe her arrest, detention and targeting is based on her peaceful and legitimate human rights activities. In addition to that, this detention comes without a lawyer present on her behalf, which is a denial of her right to access to a lawyer’s advice and to hire legal defense to represent her.
For Full list of signatories, please refer to original statement in Arabic here