• Interventions
  • Saudi Arabia

Hatoon al-Fassi and other women’s rights activists released from prison temporarily

MESA is very pleased to report that Dr. Hatoon al-Fassi was released from prison in Saudi Arabia on May 2, 2019, and has been allowed to return home to her family. Dr. al-Fassi is a renowned historian of women in pre-Islamic Arabia, a prominent advocate for women's rights, and a long-time member of MESA. She was the recipient in November 2018, in absentia, of the MESA Academic Freedom Award, the highest recognition MESA can bestow in acknowledgement of contributions to academic freedom. Dr. al-Fassi's release has been characterized as "temporary;" we continue to call for her full exoneration. We call, as well, for the release of the other women's rights advocates who remain in detention.

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Interruption of Study for King Faisal University Medical Students for Inciting Hatred toward Bahraini Government

Letter to King Faisal University President and College of Medicine Dean, Bahrain Minister of Higher Education, and Saudi Minister of Higher Education regarding the sustained interruption of study for four medical students at King Faisal University in Dammam, Saudi Arabia.

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Repressive measure intensified against members of human rights group

Letter to the Saudi Arabian government regarding further measures taken against members of the Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights after the dissolution of the group including dismissals from university posts, travel bans, imprisonment and reports of death threat and torture forcing many group members to flee the country. (See 22/6/1993)

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Further detentions of Saudi human rights group members and relatives

Letter to the Saudi Arabian Government expressing continued concern over treatment of members of the Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights as further academics with ties to this group have been arrested without criminal charges and are being held without visit or access to council. Additionally relatives of group members are now being targeted despite having no ties to the group solely as a means of pressuring activists to cease activities. (See 5/5/1994; 22/6/1993)

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Arrest and dismissals for founders of the Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights

Letter to His Royal Majesty of Saudi Arabia concerning the reported arrest of Dr. Muhammad ibn Abdullah al-Mas’ari and dismissals of Dr. Abdullah ibn Humoud al-Tuwaijri and Dr. Abdullah al-Hamed for membership in the Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights.

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Dismissal of female professors who participated in 6 November demonstration

Letter to His Royal Majesty of Saudi Arabia regarding reports that six female professors of the University of Riyadh were dismissed for participating in demonstration protesting restraints on driving for women. If true, this dismissal is a serious breach of human rights and academic freedom as the right to participate in a non-violent protest is protected under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

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