Abdullah Jelan is a young Saudi activist who started his social activism on social media upon his graduation. He was jailed by Saudi authorities for defending his right to a job, spoke about unemployment and basic rights in Saudi Arabia.
Jelan, 31, was arrested in May 2021 in a massive crackdown campaign against dozens of civil rights activists, some of whom are still held behind bars till today.
On 12 May 2021, approximately 6 cars, with 20 men on board, arrived in front of Abdullah Jelan’s family house. The authorities entered and searched the house, and then forcibly arrested Abdullah Jelan after confiscating his electronic devices without showing any warrant.
He remained in an unknown location for 10 months before he appeared in an intelligence prison in Madinah.
In November 2022, Jelan was sentenced to a 10-year prison term, followed by a 10-year travel ban, following a secret trial that lacked fair trial standards.
According to family sources, Jelan was subjected in Madinah’s intelligence prison to severe torture and held handcuffed in solitary confinement. He was also forced to spend three nights without sleep during his interrogation.
He was tortured with an electric stick that emits about 360 volts of electricity. Jelan was also prevented from receiving his medication prior to being transferred to a different prison in Dhahban.
Despite its reform allegations, the Saudi government has not tolerated any dissenting opinions that called for change.