NEOM: Save Al-Huwaitat Members Before It’s Too Late

Three members of the Al-Hwaitat tribe, Shadli Ahmed Al-Hwaiti, Ibrahim Salih Al-Hwaiti, and Atallah Musa Al-Hwaiti, are at risk of being executed at any moment after the Specialized Criminal Court of Appeal upheld their death sentences issued in August 2022.

Their sole crime was rejecting their forced eviction by the Saudi authorities to make way for the NEOM megaproject, one of the key projects of Vision 2030.

The NEOM city project is being promoted as a sustainable city of the future with innovative technologies. In truth, it is just a more developed version of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s (MBS) repressive and authoritarian policy.

The forced eviction of the al-Huwaitat tribe resulted in the death of Abdul-Rahim Al-Hwaiti, dozens of arrests, unfair trials, death sentences, and the enforced disappearance of Halima Al-Hwaiti.

Three other members of the Al-Huwaitat tribe were sentenced to life imprisonment, including Abdel Nasser Ahmed Mahmoud Abu Taqi Al-Huwaitat, sentenced to 27 years in prison; Mahmoud Ahmed Mahmoud Abu Taqi Al-Hwaiti, sentenced to 35 years in prison; and Abdullah Dakhil Allah Al-Hwaiti, sentenced to 50 years in prison.

Al-Huwaitat detainees suffered grave human rights violations, similar to those experienced by many Saudi prisoners. These violations included arbitrary detention, denial of legal counsel, limiting family visits, and inhumane detention conditions. Following unfair trials based on confessions obtained through torture, many of them received death or prison sentences.

Unfortunately, the human rights situation in Saudi Arabia is getting worse as the Saudi regime continues to enjoy impunity in light of the international community’s indifference to the heinous crimes being committed against the Saudi people.

We implore all concerned businesses taking part in the NEOM project, including foreign investors, to make sure they are not party to any violations of human rights in the Kingdom.

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