JNN 19 Mar 2013 Riyadh : Shia Demonstrators in Saudi Arabia have staged another protest rally against the Al Saud regime in central province of al-Qassim, Press reports.
The outraged protestors took to the streets in the city of Buraidah on Saturday, calling for the immediate release of political prisoners including a group of women who were recently arrested.
Earlier on March 1, Saudi security forces arrested over 300 people, including 15 women, in al-Qassim province.
The arrests took place after hundreds of Saudis staged a protest sit-in to demand the release of political prisoners.
Saudi activists say there are more than 30,000 political prisoners, mostly prisoners of conscience, in jails across the Kingdom.
According to the activists, most of the detained political thinkers are being held by the government without trial or legitimate charges and that they were arrested for merely looking suspicious.
Some of the detainees are reported to be held without trial for more than 16 years.
Attempting to incite the public against the government and the allegiance to foreign entities are usually the ready-made charges against the dissidents.
In Saudi Arabia, protests and political gatherings of any kind are prohibited.
Since February 2011, protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis in Saudi Arabia primarily calling for the release of all political prisoners, freedom of expression and assembly, and an end to widespread discrimination.
However, the demonstrations have turned into protests against the repressive Al Saud regime, especially after November 2011, when Saudi security forces killed five protesters and injured many others in the country’s Eastern Province.
In another Protest , On Friday, Saudi protesters once again took to the streets of Awamiyah located in the Qatif region, in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province.
They shouted anti-regime slogans during the demonstration to condemn Riyadh’s ongoing crackdown on protests and activists in the country.
The demonstrators also voiced their solidarity with Hussein al-Rabie, an activist who has been arrested by Saudi regime forces, calling for his immediate release.
Since February 2011, protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis in Saudi Arabia, mainly in the Qatif region and the town of Awamiyah in Eastern Province, primarily calling for the release of all political prisoners, freedom of expression and assembly, and an end to widespread discrimination.
Saudi regime forces have also arrested dozens of people including prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr.
Saudi authorities warned in October 2012 that they would deal ‘firmly’ with anti-regime demonstrations. Amnesty International slammed the warning and urged the authorities to “withdraw their threat.”
A Saudi preacher has called for reforms in the Kingdom, warning that denying the rights of people is increasing tensions across the country.
“The people have aspirations, demands and rights and they will not stay silent on total or partial confiscation of their rights. When you lose hope, you can do anything,” Salman al-Auda said in an open letter on Saturday.
The preacher, who is from the Sahwa movement, called for reforms and the coming of “a new horizon” for Saudi Arabia.
Auda warned that growing tension in the kingdom was due to “corruption, unemployment, poor housing, weak health and educational services and a lack of political reforms.”
He criticized regime crackdown on protesters, saying, “A security solution would only aggravate the situation and block the path to reforms.”
Auda called for the immediate release of human rights activists and political prisoners, saying that their detention will only “increase the bitterness, the desire for revenge and mushrooming of jihadist thinking in prisons.”
He also condemned the “continuing practice of censorship” by the country’s information officials.
An independent Saudi rights organization said that about 30,000 political activists have been held in prisons. Riyadh, however, denied the claim, saying there was no political prisoner in the country.
- Arabian Shia’s Stages Massive Show of Strength in a Demo against Al Saud’s illegal Detentions of thousands of Shias (jafrianews.com)
- Atleast 300 Arabian Shia Men & Women Protesters arrested By Saudi Forces (jafrianews.com)