• King Abdullah passed away on January 23, 2015 after a nine-and-a-half year reign and his half-brother Salman bin Abdulaziz became king. Saudi Arabia has pressed on with arrests, trials, and convictions of peaceful dissidents, and forcibly dispersed peaceful demonstrations by citizens. Authorities continued to violate the rights of Saudi women and girls and foreign workers. Courts convicted human rights defenders and others for peaceful expression or assembly demanding political and human rights reforms.
  • A Saudi man explores a website on his laptop in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on February 11, 2014.
    Saudi authorities sentenced several leading human rights activists and other reform advocates to lengthy jail terms in 2014 for their peaceful activism, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2015.

Reports

Saudi Arabia

  • Feb 11, 2015
    When King Salman, Saudi Arabia’s new monarch, issued a general amnesty for Saudi “public rights” prisoners on January 29, Saudi activists and observers felt the first glimmer of hope in some time that the kingdom’s relentless persecution of peaceful dissidents and human rights activists may be nearing its end.
  • Jan 29, 2015
    Saudi authorities sentenced several leading human rights activists and other reform advocates to lengthy jail terms in 2014 for their peaceful activism, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2015.
  • Jan 23, 2015
  • Jan 23, 2015
  • Jan 23, 2015
    King Abdullah’s reign brought about marginal advances for women but failed to secure the fundamental rights of Saudi citizens to free expression, association, and assembly. Abdullah’s successor, King Salman, should halt persecution of peaceful dissidents and religious minorities, end pervasive discrimination against women, and ensure greater protections for migrant workers.
  • Jan 15, 2015
    On December 3, officials at Jeddah’s King Abdulaziz International Airport prevented Samar Badawi from leaving Saudi Arabia to advocate abroad for the release of her husband, Waleed Abu al-Khair. A lawyer and human rights activist, he is in prison, facing a 15-year term for peacefully criticizing Saudi authorities on Twitter and in television interviews.
  • Jan 13, 2015
    The killings of 12 journalists and others at Charlie Hebdo in Paris has led many to wonder about the role of Islam in fueling vicious attacks on civilians in the name of the religion.
  • Jan 10, 2015
    King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia should overturn the lashing and prison term for a blogger imprisoned for his views and immediately grant him a pardon.
  • Dec 2, 2014
    Saudi authorities detained two women on the Saudi side of the border with the United Arab Emirates on December 1, one of whom tried to drive a car across to Saudi Arabia.
  • Nov 22, 2014
    Saudi authorities are ramping up their crackdown on people who peacefully criticize the government on the Internet. The government should end the crackdown and live up to its obligations to respect free speech.