Two Women human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia sentenced to imprisonment and travel bans

June 21, 2013

On 15 June 2013, women human rights defenders Wajeha Al-Huwaider and Fawzia Al-Oyouni were sentenced to ten months imprisonment to be followed by a two-year travel banhumanrightslogo_Goodies_14_LogoVorlagen by the District Court in Al-Khobar. The human rights defenders were arrested on 7 June 2011 and briefly held on charges of trying to sabotage the marital relationship between a Canadian woman and her Saudi husband. Wajeha Al-Huwaider and Fawzia Al-Oyouni have long campaigned for the human rights of women in Saudi Arabia and supported women who are victims of domestic abuse. They were active participants in the campaign “My Country”, and have also demanded that women be granted the right to drive a car. On 7 June 2011, the human rights defenders received a text message saying that a woman and her three children were being imprisoned against their will, deprived of food and subjected to violence by the woman’s husband. The human rights defenders brought some food to the house  but discovered that the husband had sent the message in order to trap them. The police arrived and arrested the human rights defenders on charges of attempting to smuggle the woman and her children to the Canadian Embassy in Riyadh. The human rights defenders were acquitted of these charges, but were sentenced under the Sharia law offence of takhbib, or incitement of a wife to defy the authority of her husband. Wajeha Al-Huwaider and Fawzia Al-Oyouni issued a statement on 15 June 2013, in which they state that the motivations for the case against them were malicious, and that it was an attempt to silence them and stop their work in defence of human rights and women’s rights.

via Saudi Arabia: Women human rights defenders sentenced to imprisonment and receive travel bans / Library / Home – AWID.

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