Together for Justice strongly condemns the Moroccan authorities’ decision to extradite Saudi citizen Hassan Al Rabie to Saudi Arabia under a precautionary arrest warrant issued at the request of Saudi Arabia over his anti-government activism.
Together for Justice also stresses that the Moroccan decision violates the customary international law principle of non-refoulement, which obliges countries not to return anyone to places where they would face a real risk of torture, or cruel or degrading treatment, which is the case in Saudi Arabia.
Moroccan authorities arrested Al Rabie on 16 January, only five months after reaching the country. He was detained at Marrakesh Airport while on his way to Turkey, despite not having committed any offense in Morocco throughout his five-month residence.
Al Rabie left the Saudi Kingdom 14 months ago after being subjected to constant persecution by the Saudi security forces over the political activism of his two brothers, Munir and Ali, who is in prison facing a death sentence issued in October 2022 following an unfair trial.
The decision by Morocco to deport Al Rabie is only one case in a series. The Moroccan authorities had previously extradited the Saudi-Australian citizen, Osama Al-Hasani, to Saudi Arabia on March 13, 2021, after unfair trial and political pressures despite serious concern for his safety.
One year later, the Saudi Specialized Criminal Court has sentenced Al-Hasani to four years in prison following a 6-month trial during which he was denied from his fundamental rights to defend himself.
In detention, Al-Hasani was subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment amid very difficult detention conditions.
The Specialized Criminal Court is a secretive court established to try terrorism cases. However, it routinely tries political opponents and human rights activists. This confirms that the Saudi request to extradite Al-Hasani was based on political motives and not on a commercial transaction.
In this regard, we affirm that Morocco has violated Article 3 of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, that it signed in 1993, and states that no state party shall expel, return or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture.