تاريخ التحديث: ٤ أكتوبر
Persecution in Saudi Arabia takes many forms and is often aimed at minority groups and individuals who express dissenting views.
One of the most prominent examples of persecution in the country is the treatment of the Shia minority.
Shias in Saudi Arabia are estimated to make up between 10-15% of the population, and they face systemic discrimination and persecution at the hands of the Saudi government. Shias are often denied access to high-level government positions and are also excluded from leadership positions in the country's military and security services.
Additionally, the Saudi government has been known to clamp down on religious expression and gatherings among the Shia community.
In 2016, for example, the Saudi government executed a prominent Shia cleric, Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, on charges of terrorism and inciting sectarianism. This sparked protests among Shias both inside and outside of Saudi Arabia, with many calling for greater rights and freedoms for the minority group.
Another example of persecution in Saudi Arabia is the treatment of women's rights activists. In recent years, a number of women's rights activists in the country have been arrested and jailed on charges of "undermining national security" and "sowing sedition." These charges are often used as a pretext to silence those who speak out against the government's policies or advocate for greater rights and freedoms for women.
One such activist is Loujain al-Hathloul, who was arrested in 2018 and sentenced to five years in prison in 2020 for her activism. During her detention, al-Hathloul was subjected to torture and sexual abuse, according to her family and human rights organizations. Political dissidents and journalists also face persecution in Saudi Arabia. In 2018, the Saudi government faced international condemnation for its role in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was a prominent critic of the Saudi government. Khashoggi was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, and his murder was widely seen as an attempt to silence him and other dissidents who speak out against the government's policies. These examples are just a few of the many instances of persecution in Saudi Arabia. While the government has made some efforts to improve its human rights record in recent years, critics say that much more needs to be done to protect the rights and freedoms of all individuals living in the country.