Saudi Arabia detained thousands of people without trial says HRW

Vastavam web: Saudi Arabia has detained thousands of people for up to a decade without trial, Human Rights Watch said today, slamming the country’s powerful crown prince for the “arbitrary detentions”.Official data from the interior ministry, analysed by HRW, showed that authorities had detained 2,305 people for more than six months some for over a decade without referring them to court.

The ultraconservative kingdom, an absolute monarchy, has introduced a string of reform in past months, spearheaded by the country’s unchallenged Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, dubbed “MBS”, who was appointed heir to the throne in June 2017.”If Saudi authorities can hold a detainee for months on end with no charges, it’s clear that the Saudi criminal justice system remains broken and unjust, and it only seems to be getting worse,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director for the New York-based rights group.

“It seems that MBS’s Vision 2030 plan better describes the length of detentions without charge than an aspirational time horizon for reforms.” The project includes plans to privatise part of oil giant Aramco and boost the role of women in the workforce.Women will be permitted to drive in Saudi Arabia from June.