Saturday, July 23, 2011

Proposed Saudi Arabian anti-terror law would strangle peaceful protest

Amnesty International obtained a copy of the draft anti-terrorism law

Amnesty International, July 22, 2011

A Saudi Arabian government council reviewed the law in June
A Saudi Arabian government council reviewed the law in June
© AP

A draft Saudi Arabian anti-terrorism law obtained by Amnesty International would allow the authorities to prosecute peaceful dissent as a terrorist crime.

The organization has obtained copies of the Draft Penal Law for Terrorism Crimes and Financing of Terrorism, which would also allow extended detention without charge or trial. Questioning the integrity of the King or the Crown Prince would carry a minimum prison sentence of 10 years.

The leak of the draft comes as ongoing peaceful protests across the Middle East and North Africa are being met with government repression.

“This draft law poses a serious threat to freedom of expression in the Kingdom in the name of preventing terrorism,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Deputy Middle East and North Africa Director.

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