Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
What next on Iran’s nuclear deal: follow the news here

Saudi rights group calls for release of Shiite detainees

Human Rights First Society wants 'the immediate release of these peaceful demonstrators and a full investigation into the accusations of physical and psychological torture.'

A Saudi-based rights group has urged the kingdom to release 100 Shiite protesters it said were arrested in its Eastern Province last week, some of whom it says have been tortured.

"During the peaceful protests last week in the Eastern Province, the protesters were arrested," Human Rights First Society said on Wednesday.

The organisation called for "the immediate release of these peaceful demonstrators and a full investigation into the accusations of physical and psychological torture to which some of the detainees were subjected".

Ten people were injured in clashes on March 18 between demonstrators and police in Omran, a city in the Eastern Province which is home to the vast majority of Saudi Arabia's estimated two million Shiites, according to a witness.

At least 2,500 people demonstrated in Awamiya and about 1,000 each in Safwa and Al Rabeeya, all near Qatif City, where Shiites have been holding daily demonstrations, witnesses said.

Demonstrators have shouted slogans in support of Bahraini Shiites and demanded the release of nine Shiites jailed without trial in Saudi Arabia since 1996.

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 A view of a defaced portrait of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during an anti-North Korean rally on the 102nd birthday of North Korean founder Kim Il Sung in central Seoul. Kim Hong-Ji / Reuters

Best photography from around the world, April 15

The National View's photo editors pick the best images of the day from around the world.

 The Doha-based Youssef Al Qaradawi speaks to the crowd as he leads Friday prayers in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt in February, 2011. The outspoken pro-Muslim Brotherhood imam has been critical of the UAE’s policies toward Islamist groups, adding to friction between Qatar and other GCC states. Khalil Hamra / AP Photo

Brotherhood imam skips Doha sermon, but more needed for GCC to reconcile

That Youssef Al Qaradawi did not speak raises hopes that the spat involving Qatar and the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain might be slowly moving towards a resolution.

 Twitter photo of  Abdel Fattah El Sisi on the campaign trail on March 30. Photo courtesy-Twitter/@SisiCampaign

El Sisi rides a bicycle, kicks off social media storm

The photos and video created a huge buzz across social media networks, possibly a marker of a new era for Egypt.

 An Afghan election commission worker carries a ballot box at a vote counting centre in Jalalabad on April 6. A roadside bomb hit a truck carrying full ballot boxes in northern Afghanistan, killing three people a day after the country voted for a successor to President Hamid Karzai. Eight boxes of votes were destroyed in the blast, which came as the three leading candidates voiced concerns about possible fraud. Noorullah Shirzada / AFP Photo

Two pressing questions for Afghanistan’s future president

Once in office, the next Afghan president must move fast to address important questions that will decide the immediate future of the country.

 Friday is UN Mine Awareness Day and Omer Hassan, who does demining work in Iraqi Kurdistan, is doing all he can to teach people about the dangers posed by landmines. Louise Redvers for The National

A landmine nearly ended Omer’s life but he now works to end the threat of mines in Iraq

Omer Hassan does demining work in Iraqi Kurdistan and only has to show people his mangled leg to underscore the danger of mines. With the world marking UN Mine Awareness Day on Friday, his work is as important as ever as Iraq is one of the most mine-affected countries in the world.

 Supporters of Turkey's ruling AKP cheer as they follow the election's results in front of the party's headquarters in Ankara on March 30. Adem Altan/ AFP Photo

Erdogan critic fears retaliation if he returns to Turkey

Emre Uslu is a staunch critic of Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Now, with a mass crackdown on opposition expected, he is unsure when he can return home.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National