Thursday 30 March 2023 - 15:10

Seven Jailed Saudi Activists Protest Their Detention through Hunger Strike

Story Code : 1049622
Seven Jailed Saudi Activists Protest Their Detention through Hunger Strike
According to ALQST for Human Rights , Shehab, a student at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom and the other women began their hunger strike on March 23. 

Shehab received a 34-year jail term and 34-year travel ban in August 2022, for “assisting those who seek to disrupt public order and destabilize civil and national security by following their Twitter accounts,” and by retweeting their tweets; her sentence was later reduced to 27 years in January.  

She was arrested in January 2021 when she returned to Saudi Arabia for a visit and endured months of interrogation.  

Her Twitter profile showed she had 2,597 followers and frequently tweeted pictures of her young children.  
She also sometimes retweeted tweets by Saudi dissidents living in exile, which called for the release of political prisoners in the kingdom, in particular Saudi women’s rights activist Loujain Al-Hathloul, who was released from jail in Saudi Arabia in 2021, after serving three years of a six-year prison sentence for “counterterrorism” for defying a ban on women driving, but remains in the kingdom under a travel ban. 

A week after Shehab's shock sentence, the same court gave Nourah Al-Qahtani a 45-year sentence for “breaking the social fabric of the kingdom” and “violating the public order” over tweets from two anonymous accounts. 

Qahtani is reportedly a mother of five with health issues, but very little else has been disclosed publicly about her.