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UA 199/93 - Saudi Arabia: fear of torture/ill-treatment: Dr 'Abdullah al- Hamed, Dr Muhammad 'Abdullah al-Mas'ari

, N° d'index: MDE 23/005/1993

Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed was arrested at his home by members of al-Mabahith al-'Amma (General Intelligence) on 15 June 1993 and taken to an unknown location, where it is feared he may be subject to torture or ill-treatment. Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed, a writer and lecturer at al-Imam Muhammad bin Saud University in Riyadh, was one of the six founding members of Lujnat al- Difa' 'an al-Huquq al-Shar'iyya, Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR) in Saudi Arabia. The spokesperson of the CDLR, Dr Muhammad al-Mas'ari has been held incommunicado since his arrest on 15 May, and has allegedly been tortured with sleep deprivation. Both men are regarded as prisoners of conscience arrested solely for the peaceful expression of their political beliefs.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: MDE 23/05/93
Distr: UA/SC
UA 199/93 Fear of Torture/Ill-treatment 18 June 1993
SAUDI ARABIA: Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed
Dr Muhammad 'Abdullah al-Mas'ari
Amnesty International is concerned for the safety of Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed
who was arrested at his house by members of al-Mabahith al-'Amma (General
Intelligence) on 15 June 1993 and taken to an unknown location. It is feared
that Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed may be subjected to ill-treatment or torture while
being held in incommunicado detention.
Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed, a writer and a lecturer at al-Imam Muhammad bin Saud
University in Riyadh, was one of the six founding members of Lujnat al-Difa'
'an al-Huquq al-Shar'iyya (Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights-CDLR)
in Saudi Arabia. The spokesperson of the CDLR, Dr Muhammad al-Mas'ari, has
been held incommunicado since his arrest on 15 May. He has allegedly been
tortured by being deprived of sleep for prolonged periods.
Since the foundation of the CDLR, Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed has, on more than one
occasion, been summoned for questioning by the authorities. During these
meetings attempts were reportedly made to persuade him and other CDLR founding
members to disband the committee. Amnesty International believes that Dr
'Abdullah al-Hamed and Dr Muhammad al-Mas'ari are prisoners of conscience
arrested solely for the peaceful expression of their political beliefs.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The CDLR was founded in Riyadh on 3 May by six prominent Saudi Arabian religious
scholars and professionals, among them Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed. In a statement
the group announced the aims of the organization to be the "alleviation of
injustice...and the defence of legitimate rights decided by the Shari'a (Islamic
law)". It called on individuals to report to the committee any injustice or
information that may help eliminate injustice. On 11 May the Council of Senior
'Ulama (religious scholars), the highest religious authority in Saudi Arabia,
issued a statement expressing surprise at the establishment of such an
organization, stating that Saudi Arabia had no need for human rights
organizations since it was ruled in accordance with the Shari'a.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in English, Arabic or in your own language:
- seeking assurances that both Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed and Dr Muhammad
al-Mas'ari are being treated humanely and urging that they be allowed access
to family members, defence counsel and doctors;
- urging that Dr 'Abdullah al-Hamed and Dr Muhammad al-Mas'ari be immediately
and unconditionally released.
APPEALS TO
1) His Royal Highness
Prince Naif bin 'Abdul-'Aziz
Minister of the Interior
Ministry of the Interior
PO Box 2833
Airport Road
Riyadh 11134
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Telegrams: Minister Interior, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Faxes: + 966 1 4050130
Telexes: 404416
Salutation: Your Royal Highness
2) His Royal Highness
Prince Saud al-Faisal bin 'Abdul-'Aziz
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Nasseriya Street
Riyadh 11124
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Telegrams: Minister Foreign Affairs, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Telexes: 405000
Salutation: Your Royal Highness
and to diplomatic representatives of Saudi Arabia accredited to your country.
The World Conference on Human Rights is being held in Austria this month and
you can enhance the power of your appeals by also sending copies to the diplomatic
representative of Saudi Arabia in Austria during June at the following address:
Embassy of Saudi Arabia:
The Ambassador:
Botschaft von Saudi-Arabien
Formanekgasse 38
1190 Wien
Austria
Faxes: + 43 1 36 25 60
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 30 July 1993.

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