Here's a short list of journalists, bloggers and activists rotting in our ally's dungeons while our Canadian politicians party with the oil-rich sheikhs in Geneva and at other world meetings.
Don't miss seeing the vid of an imam weeping like the fuck he is, asking for Hamza Kashgari, a blogger, to be brought to "justice" (read that as "beheaded"). This is the mad kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This is the ally Canadian politicians and businessmen waltz with endlessly, all in the hope of getting extra oil barrels and inroads into Saudi Arabia for making more blood money. Are we proud yet?!
....A Jeddah criminal court judge has sentenced Saudi Arabian journalist Raif Badawi to seven years in prison and 600 lashes for the crime of “insulting Islam.”
It could have gone worse for Badawi: Had the judge not thrown out the charge of apostasy, he would have received a death sentence.
He’ll probably survive the whipping only because it comes in four sessions with planned hospitalizations in between. He has until Sept. 6 to file an appeal.
Badawi, 30, is the co-founder and editor of the website saudiliberalnetwork.com, which encouraged people to post their thoughts about the role of religion and politics, among other things, in their lives. (No longer, however: The site has been shut down.)
He was arrested on June 17, 2012, and sent to Jeddah’s Buraiman prison. The conviction and sentence were announced two weeks ago.
Since being jailed, Badawi hasn’t seen his wife and three children, who are living in exile in Lebanon.....
Women human rights defenders sentenced to imprisonment and receive travel bans. On 15 June 2013, human rights defenders Ms Wajeha Al-Huwaider and Ms Fawzia Al-Oyouni were sentenced to ten months imprisonment to be followed by a two year travel ban 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 women's rights in Saudi Arabia and supported women victims of domestic abuse. They were active participants in the women's rights campaign 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. The sentencing comes in a difficult context for women and women human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia. Women are heavily dependent on male guardians, and are required to have a male relative with them in order to enter government buildings and courts. .....
Saudi blogger Hamza Kashgari jailed, may face execution after tweets about Muhammad. Hamza Kashgari, the young Saudi blogger whose foolhardy tweets about Prophet Muhammad left conservative clerics baying for his blood, is a poet and a dreamer, says a former colleague.
“Hamza always liked being alone, he wasn’t a social person,” said a senior editor at Al Bilad, the newspaper Mr. Kashgari used to work for.
“He had a broken look in his eyes and I think that was a sign of sadness or depression. He’s a poet and had a lot of philosophical ideas.”
Now, the 23-year-old is Saudi Arabia’s most reviled man and could even face execution for blasphemy.
It’s all because of three tweets of an imagined conversation with the Prophet Muhammad.
Writing on the Prophet’s birthday, he said he “loved the rebel in you” and he “loved some aspects of you, hated others.”
The reaction on the Internet was swift and vitriolic.
First, there was a flurry of angry comments on Twitter — estimated at more than 30,000 in 24 hours. A Facebook page, “Saudi people want punishment for Hamza Kashgari,” has quickly grown to more than 20,000 members.
“The only choice is for Kashgari to be killed and crucified in order to be a lesson to other secularists,” commented Abu Abdulrahman, an online reader of al-Madina newspaper.
A YouTube video of a tearful Nasser al-Omar, a Saudi cleric, calling for Mr. Kashgari to be arrested and tried went viral.
....Al Ghazzali ended his speech by addressing the Saudi King Abdullah saying "Last year in Vienna, King Abdullah opened the International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue " a center supposedly aimed at promoting comity and respect between religions--May I ask His Majesty, via this Council, how can he conceivably equate a possible 600 lashes and 7 year jail term for a free thinker with promoting tolerance and respect between religions?"