Waleed Abu al-Khair

Waleed Abu al-Khair

Saudi Arabia

Waleed Abu al-Khair is one of the best-known voices for democratic and human rights reforms in Saudi Arabia. As a lawyer he has been an outspoken advocate for an elected parliament, an independent judiciary, a constitutional monarchy and recognition of human rights. Waleed Abu al-Khair is the founder of the Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia, a human rights organization that published information about human rights violations in Saudi Arabia.

Arrest and prosecution

Waleed Abu Al-Khair was arrested in April 2014. On February 15, 2015, the Specialized Criminal Court of Appeal in Riyadh confirmed a sentence of fifteen years in prison, a travel ban of equal duration following imprisonment and a fine of SR 200.000,- (approximately EUR 47.000,-). The charges against him were “striving to overthrow the state and the authority of the King”, “criticising and insulting the judiciary”, “assembling international organisations against the Kingdom”, “creating and supervising an unlicensed organisation”, “contributing to the establishment of another” and “preparing and storing information that will affect public security”.

The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has twice reviewed the legitimacy of the detention of Abu al-Khair in November 2015 and July 2018. The Working Group stated that the arrest, prosecution, conviction and sentencing of Abu al-Khair lacked any legal basis and has twice recommended his immediate release.

News aboutWaleed Abu al-Khair

22 January 2020 Waleed Abu Al-Khair on hunger strike
25 June 2019 Abu al-Khair to receive ABA Award
15 April 2015 1 year since arrest Abu al-Khair: petition to WGAD
13 January 2015 Waleed Abu al-Khair sentenced to 15 years on appeal

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