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Face Possible Return to Yemen’s Humanitarian Crisis, Loss of Critical Remittances

(Beirut) – Saudi authorities have since July 2021 began to terminate or not renew contracts of Yemeni professionals, which could force them to return to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, Human Rights Watch said today. Saudi authorities should suspend…
An aid worker gives a food ration to a woman in Sanaa, Yemen, July 19, 2020
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Governments Should Halt Trade in Surveillance Technology

(New York) – Recent reports that NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware has been used for surveillance of dozens of journalists, human rights activists, and others demonstrate the urgent need for governments to suspend the trade in surveillance technology until…
People march in Budapest, Hungary during a July 26, 2021 protest against the Hungarian government over reports that it has used Pegasus spyware.
News

4-Year Sentence Based on Vague Charges

(Beirut) – A Saudi court sentenced a Sudanese media personality and journalist to four years in prison on June 8, 2021, for “insulting the state’s institutions and symbols” and “negatively speaking about the kingdom’s policies” among other vague…
Ahmad Ali Abdelkader, 31
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Arbitrary Travel Bans, Incommunicado Detention, Secret Appeal Hearing

(Beirut) – Saudi authorities should immediately release the imprisoned children of a former Saudi official following an unfair trial that took place in an apparent effort to coerce him to return to Saudi Arabia, Human Rights Watch said today. Omar Al-…
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Prison Guards Describe Harrowing Scenes Concerning Political Detainees

(Beirut) – New accounts have emerged of alleged torture of high-profile political detainees in Saudi prisons, Human Rights Watch said today. Saudi authorities failed to independently and credibly investigate allegations that Saudi authorities tortured…
© 2016 Human Rights Watch
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Joint Statement by Human Rights and Digital Privacy Rights Organizations

The undersigned human rights and digital rights organizations urge Google to immediately halt its plan to establish a new Google Cloud region in Saudi Arabia until the company can publicly demonstrate how it will mitigate adverse human rights impacts…
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Risks Violating Rights to Privacy, Freedom of Expression

(Beirut) – Google should immediately halt its decision to establish a new Cloud region in Saudi Arabia until it can clearly outline steps to mitigate adverse human rights abuses, 39 human rights and digital privacy rights organizations and individuals…
201911MENA_SaudiArabia_Repression_main
News

Harsh Sentencing, Travel Bans, Torture Allegations Persist

(Beirut) – Saudi authorities’ repression of dissidents, human rights activists, and independent critics remains at full force despite the releases of some prominent activists in early 2021, Human Rights Watch said today. The sentencing of three men in…
Top, left to right: Salman Al-Awda, Dr. Walid Fitaihi and his daughter, Sarah Jabri, and Omar Jabri. Bottom, left to right: Loujain al-Hathloul, Mohammed al-Otaibi, Abdelrahman al-Sadhan, and Nassima al-Sadah.
News

Human Rights Watch Introduces Country Index Based on Laws, Policies

(Beirut) – Governments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) should outlaw the violent discipline of children, Human Rights Watch said today, introducing an index categorizing countries in the region based on their laws and policies. The MENA…
2020 Dadu Shin for Human Rights Watch
News

Al-Hasani at Risk of Unfair Trial After Wrongful Deportation From Morocco

(Beirut) – Saudi officials should immediately make public the whereabouts and condition of a Saudi-Australian man forcibly returned to Saudi Arabia in March 2021, Human Rights Watch said today. No information has emerged about the situation of Osama al…
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News

Allegations of Torture, Convicted Based on Tainted Confessions

(Beirut) – A Saudi man on death row could be executed even though he was 14 at the time of the alleged crime and his conviction followed a grossly unfair trial, Human Rights Watch said today. His case will be transferred next to the Supreme Court in…
Abdullah al-Huwaiti
News

Abusive Elements Remain; Changes Exclude Domestic Workers

(Beirut) – Saudi Arabia introduced labor reforms in March 2021 that will ease restrictions and allow some migrant workers to change jobs without employer consent under certain narrow circumstances, Human Rights Watch said today. The reforms,…
Foreign laborers work on the construction of new luxury houses in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, April 2019.
News

Overwhelming Evidence of Role in Khashoggi Murder, Other Abuses

A United States intelligence report released last week adds further evidence to what many have long suspected: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, had approved the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Yet despite the report’s…
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News

Thousands of Migrants to be Freed After Being Held in Abysmal Conditions

Hundreds of migrants, mostly from Ethiopia, held in appalling conditions in Saudi detention centers will be released and returned home. In December, Human Rights Watch research found that the workers were subjected to ill-treatment and deplorable…
Ethiopian migrants arrive back in Ethiopia after months in Saudi detention camps
News

Ongoing Repression, Absence of Civil Society Impede Progress

(Beirut) – Saudi Arabia recently announced a series of important and necessary reforms, but ongoing repression and a lack of respect for basic rights are major barriers to progress, Human Rights Watch said today. The repression of independent civil…
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on a large billboard in London, England.
News

Disparaging References to Shia, Sufi Practices Remain Despite Progress

(Beirut) – Saudi Arabia has taken important steps to purge its school religion textbooks of hateful and intolerant language, but the current texts maintain language that disparages practices associated with religious minorities, Human Rights Watch…
Then-Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman attends a graduation ceremony at King Faisal Air College in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, January 25, 2017. © 2017 Reuters
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Loujain al-Hathloul, Nouf Abdelaziz Risk Return to Prison if They Speak Out

Prominent Saudi women’s rights activist Loujain al-Hathloul was released from prison earlier this week after spending 1,001 days in detention, a testament to the tireless campaign of her family and human rights activists around the globe since her arrest…
Loujain al-Hathloul
News

Urgent Need for More Reform to Prevent Future Abuses

Saudi Arabia has commuted the death sentence imposed on Ali Mohammed al-Nimr for participating in protests when he was a child. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman also announced the government would finally establish a criminal code that will “…
Ali al-Nimr was one of at least three Saudi men on death row for protest-related crimes committed when they were children.
News

“Baby S” Runs Risk of Being Stateless

A child born to Bulgarian and British mothers has been denied Bulgarian citizenship and is now at risk of being stateless. “Baby S” was born in December 2019 in Spain and although the baby’s birth certificate was issued by Spain with both mothers…
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