In a video,, a retired Saudi officer, criticized the Kingdom’s foreign policies after the Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman assumed the mandate. He also criticized the leadership of Mohammed bin Zayed of Saudi Arabia and his influence on its policies, which is unfavorable to the Saudi Arabia, according to him.
The Saudi authorities immediately denied him of being promoted to the rank of brigadier general. Soon after he got arrested in September 2017, and he is still suffering to this day in Saudi prisons, according to the account of prisoners of conscience
Zayed Al-Banawi specializes in political, security and intelligence sciences, and in the efforts of the United Nations in combating drugs, a researcher in the science of strategies, and a human rights activist interested in the reality of the Saudi people.
Al-Banawi was not just an officer serving during his working hours, but he was interested in political affairs and studied in them. He was interested in the Yemeni issue and repeatedly warned that the UAE’s intervention in the region came after the failure of the Iranian role in aggravating the Arab region.
He also warned the Saudi government against embarking on a long war in Yemen, as the UAE may work for the secession of southern Yemen to be under its control in order to be able to control the seaports, which has already happened.
Al-Banawi attributed the reasons for his fear of the secession of southern Yemen to the danger to the future of Saudi Arabia, however instead of listening to his opinion, which he expressed peacefully and respectfully, he was arrested by the state security forces of the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Before being forced to leave work for criticizing the policies of MBS, his manager Major General Dawoud, asked the media committee to publish news accusing him of being a psychiatric patient and a danger to the state, according to what Al-Banawi said in a video on YouTube, and he attributed his boss’s action to being directed by Major General Muhammad bin Nayef, because he advised him once to follow the interests of the Saudi Kingdom.
During his work, he provided reports and evidence of great corruption within some government departments through the advisor to the Saudi Crown Prince, who announced receiving corruption evidence to hold the perpetrators accountable, but he was soon prevented from entering his office and then he was forced to resign from work.
Since his arrest on September 12, 2017, the whereabouts of Al-Banawi remains unknown, and he has not been brought to trial, no one knows what he was accused of. He has been deprived of communication with his family and his lawyers, delegated by his family to defend him in case of his trial.
Al-Banawi’s place of detention is still unknown, and the Saudi Ministry of Interior has not released any information indicating anything about him.
Zayed Al-Banawi is a diabetic patient whose disease became severe, so he had to have an operation that amputated his feet.
Human rights organizations and activists called on the Saudi authorities to release him after more than three years have passed, or to bring him to an independent and impartial trial.
Together for Justice appealed to the Saudi government to release him as there are no charges brought against him due to which he is imprisoned. It also demanded that he receives the medical care required for his case.
Finally, the organization demanded the Saudi authorities to respect the freedom of opinion and expression as long as it is in accordance with the law.