Women Jailed for 45 Years for Challenging the Country's King and Crown Prince

Riyadh: A Saudi lady recently imprisoned for 45 years was condemned for utilizing Twitter to “challenge” the nation’s top king and crown prince, as indicated by a court report seen Tuesday by AFP.

The cruel sentence for Nourah al-Qahtani, which became exposed last week and drew quick global judgment, was given under a month after US President Joe Biden voiced worry about human rights liberties during a questionable visit to Saudi Arabia.

The condemning record was given to AFP by Democracy to the Arab World Now (DAWN), a Washington-based rights group established by slain Saudi columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

The report depicts Qahtani as a mother of five in her late 40s who experiences unknown medical problems. She doesn’t have an enormous public profile and it isn’t clear the way that her unknown Twitter account, which has less than 600 followers, pulled in the consideration of Saudi specialists.

The court found that Qahtani had utilized Twitter “to challenge the religion and justice” of King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman.

It likewise says she induced “the activities of those who seek to disturb public order and destabilize the security of society and the stability of the state” by “distributing misleading and malevolent tweets”.

Qahtani likewise used Twitter to “affront state images and authorities” and request “the release of detainees pending security cases”, the record says, without giving further subtleties.

Qahtani’s account, as distinguished in the court report, includes various posts condemning the government, and its banner picture incorporates a hashtag calling for an anti-government protest matching with last year’s hajj pilgrimage.

The account likewise retweeted posts cautioning of attempts to arrest those behind public protests, which are not endured in Saudi Arabia. Its last post is dated July 2021, that very month Qahtani was arrested.

A court had at first sentenced her in February to six and a half years in jail, trailed by a travel ban for the same amount of time. The indictment then, at that point, pursued a more brutal sentence, bringing about the 45-year term.

Prince Mohammed promoted the development of women’s rights subject to his authority that saw them being given the right to drive, while likewise directing a crackdown on women activists.

Prior in August, rights bunches groups the instance of Salma al-Shehab, a Ph.D. candidate at Britain’s University of Leeds who was sentenced to 34 years in jail for supporting protesters looking to “disturb public order” by retweeting their posts.

Qahtani’s sentence “is now part of a pattern”, said Abdullah Alaoudh, DAWN’s director of research for the Gulf region.

By Archana

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