The Twitter account of Prisoners of Conscience published a tweet confirming that the activist Abdulaziz Al-Sunaidi began a strike yesterday, Thursday, March 11, 2021, protesting his detention conditions and ill-treatment in Unaizah Prison.
On October 13, 2013, the Criminal Court sentenced the Saudi citizen Abdulaziz Abdul Latif Al-Sunaidi, 45, to 8 years imprisonment with a travel ban for another 8 years, and a fine of 50,000 riyals.
On February 8, 2015, the Saudi security forces arrested Abdulaziz Al-Sunaidi from a petrol station, and took him immediately to the police station in Al-Qassim Governorate where he remained for a day, after which he was brought before the prosecution for investigations on his human rights activities on Twitter, and about statements he signed calling on the authorities in Saudi Arabia to undertake political reforms.
Two days after his detention in the Shamasiyah police station, he was transferred to the criminal prison in Buraidah, then he was transferred to Al-Malaz prison in Riyadh, then to Briman prison in Jeddah, and he is currently detained in Al-Malaz prison in Riyadh.
Human Rights Violations
During his detention, Al-Sunaidi was subjected to enforced disappearance and was prevented from communicating with his family, the outside world, and even his lawyer throughout the investigation period, and then it became clear that he was in Buraidah Criminal Prison.
In July 2015, Al-Sunaidi was transferred to Jeddah, the summer residence of the Specialized Criminal Court, where the authorities held the first session for his trial, and then he was transferred to Riyadh on October 6, 2015, to complete the court sessions. Given the ongoing violations exercised by the authorities against him, he entered into a hunger strike.
Charges Raised against Him
Insulting the king and interfering in matter not of his concern.
• Spreading chaos and inciting public opinion.
• Stirring up strife through his tweets on his Twitter account.
Incitement to violate the system
Spreading chaos and disturbing security by signing a statement calling for demonstrations.
• Diminishing and insulting the judiciary, and describing judges as oppressors.
• Describing the Saudi regime as a police system that targets human rights.
• Controlling public opinion by accusing security forces and senior officials of oppression and torture.
• His support and sympathy with the Association for Civil and Political Rights (ACPRA).
• His non-compliance with the judiciary’s decision to dissolve the (Hasm) association.
• Retweeting offensive hashtags and accounts claiming to support detainees
• Preparing, storing and sending anything that would prejudice public order by writing tweets accusing supervisory and executive authorities of injustice.
Many organizations support Al-Sunaidi and other prisoners of conscience with all their different affiliations in Saudi Arabia. The European-Saudi Organization for Human Rights called for the dropping the verdict issued against Al-Sunaidi for being based on charges related to the exercise of his right to expression, which is a legitimate and peaceful political activities.
Together for Justice Organization stands in solidarity with Al-Sunaidi and called on the Saudi authorities to drop the charges and release him, while guaranteeing his human and societal rights and enabling him to visit and meet his lawyer. It also called on the Saudi authorities to review all local laws on community work.