First Published: 2010-12-06

 

No country for criticism: Saudi professor arrested after writing about conflict within royal family

 

Law professor Mohammed al-Abdulkarim held after article critical of monarchy.

 

Middle East Online

The message: Non of your business

RIYADH - A Saudi law professor was arrested after publishing an article on a website critical of the country's ruling royal family, a human rights group said Monday.

Mohammed al-Abdulkarim, was arrested at his Riyadh home on Sunday by four men, variously wearing civilian clothes and uniforms, the Human Rights First Society of Saudi Arabia (HRFS) said.

Abdulkarim, 40, teaches jurisprudence at Imam Mohammed bin Saud University, the country's leading Islamic university, according to HRFS and a Facebook page set up to defend him.

"His arrest was illegal on two counts," said HRFS head Ibrahim Mugaiteeb.

Abdulkarim was taken without a court warrant for his arrest, and has been held for 24 hours without charge, Mugaiteeb said.

The arrest came after the Arabic website royaah.net published an article under Abdulkarim's name dated November 23 that suggested there were conflicts in the ruling Al-Saud royal family, and asked what that would mean for the country.

Abdulkarim's article came a day after 86-year-old King Abdullah departed Riyadh for the United States for an operation to treat a herniated disc in his back.

The country's number two, Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz, believed to be 84-85, returned from his overseas residence in Morocco to stand in for Abdullah in his absence.

The health and age of the country's leading princes has drawn more attention to the issues of royal succession in recent weeks.

The Saudi government often takes strong action against public criticism of the monarchy, and blocks access to many foreign internet websites with critical articles on the royal family.

However, as of Monday afternoon, the royaah.net website was not blocked by the Saudi government censor.

 

Israel kills three in attack on pro-regime Syria camp

Iran's historically unpredictable elections

France votes under heavy security

US Defense Secretary Mattis visits strategic Djibouti

Satellite dishes sprout in post-IS east Mosul

Iran reverses decision to ban live presidential debates

Six Israelis including two soldiers held for anti-Arab attacks

Economists, rights advocates concerned over Egypt’s state of emergency

Qatari hunters ecstatic at release from Iraqi kidnappers

Prosecutor says charities colluding with migrant traffickers

Iran's Ahmadinejad won't endorse other candidates

Rocky days ahead after Turkey referendum

Huge Shiite crowd throngs Baghdad shrine

Rabat accuses Algiers of expelling 55 migrants across border

Morocco, US take part in joint military exercise

US defence secretary visits key ally Qatar

Lebanese activists ramp up campaign against rape law

Saudis among kidnapped hunters freed in Iraq

Trial in Tunisia beach massacre set to begin April 26

Tunisia hotel attacked by jihadists sees hope in 'rebirth'

IS claims deadly attack on FSB office in Russia

Spate of attacks shows weakening of Islamic State

Mediterranean migrant death toll tops 1,000 in 2017

Iraq forces free 11-year-old Yazidi girl in Mosul

Kuwaiti opposition leader freed from prison

Kidnapped Qataris freed in Iraq, Syria evacuations resume

Turkey opposition to appeal referendum at top court

Fears engulf French election after Paris shooting

An Iraqi family's Colombian odyssey

US defence chief in Israel for talks on Iran, Syria

Morocco arrests scandal-hit Ferrari driving 'rich kid'

Syria evacuees on move again after being blocked for 48 hours

French policeman killed in IS attack in Paris

Trump: Iran not 'living up to spirit' of nuclear deal

Ahmadinejad barred from running in election

US urges UN council to focus on 'incredibly destructive' Iran

Iran bans live election debates

UN, Russia set for Syria meet without US

Suicide bombers at Syria transit site 'disguised' as aid workers

Moscow bid for new Syria attack probe rejected

Iraq summons Turkish envoy over Erdogan interview

Erdogan revives death penalty debate in Turkey

Thousands protest unemployment in Tunisia

Israel occupation forces fire at Palestinian protesters

Saudi Arabia malls to hire only locals