Saudi regime supports Israeli occupation by arresting pro-Palestine activists

Many anticipated that the Arab and Islamic nations would adopt a strong stance and take concrete action to halt this violent aggression and put an end to the crimes of the occupation, given the growing brutality of the Israeli occupation in its ongoing war on the besieged Gaza Strip. However, the reality was disappointing, as Israel found support from the Arab regimes on par with that of its foreign allies.

Years before the current conflict, the Saudi regime led the group of Arab regimes that had long since abandoned the Palestinian cause and strengthened their ties to the occupation, both formally and informally. One way the Saudi regime supported the Israeli occupation was by detaining Palestinians, rejecting the occupation, and calling for its end. Of particular, this included journalists Abdul Rahman Farhana and other members of the Palestinian and Jordanian nationalities who had lived in Saudi Arabia for decades.

In February 2019, the Saudi regime began a campaign of widespread arrests of scores of Palestinians and Jordanians living on its territory. After forcing them into forced disappearance for several months, the regime brought them before the courts on allegations that they had supported the Palestinian resistance. Despite the absence of substantial evidence linking any of these detainees to the crimes against them, harsh sentences were handed down after two and a half years.

These verdicts were issued by a corrupt legal system following politicized trials with no regard for basic justice, where detainees were not allowed to defend themselves or have a legal representation.

Among these detainees is the Jordanian journalist Abdul Rahman Muhammad Farhana, who was sentenced to 19 years in prison before being reduced to nine years. He is presently a prisoner in Saudi Arabia, suffering from intentional medical neglect, particularly considering his advanced age of 67, as well as abuse and being deprived of regular family contact, all while being held in a cell that does not adhere to international detention standards.

The sentence imposed on Farhana can only be understood as directly serving the interests of the brutal Israeli occupation that has been abusing the Palestinian people for more than 75 years, in addition to its lack of solid legal foundations, reliance on flimsy evidence, and a confession obtained through torture or threats and blackmail. These detainees are charged with opposing the Israeli occupation and standing up for Palestinian families who have been harmed by the occupation forces’ actions.

We demand that the international community step in, exert pressure on the Saudi authorities to overturn these ruling, drop the charges against the Palestinian and Jordanian detainees right away, and immediately form an urgent committee to visit the Kingdom, assess the detainees’ living conditions, and take prompt, decisive action to guarantee that each and every one of them is granted their legal and human rights.

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