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AFP
May 7, 2018
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‘S Arabia detains thousands for months without trial’

World

AFP
May 7, 2018

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DUBAI: Saudi Arabia has detained thousands of people for years without trial, Human Rights Watch said on Sunday, slamming the country’s powerful crown prince for the "arbitrary detentions".

Official data from the interior ministry, analysed by HRW, showed that authorities had detained 2,305 people for more than six months without referring them to court. More than 1,870 had been held for more than a year and 251 for more than three years with their cases still "under investigation", HRW said, citing the ministry database.

One person has been held for over a decade in what HRW said was a case of "documented arbitrary detention". The ultraconservative kingdom, an absolute monarchy, has introduced a string of reform in past months, spearheaded by the country’s unchallenged Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, dubbed "MBS", who was appointed heir to the throne in June 2017. Yet arbitrary detention appears to have "increased dramatically in recent years", according to HRW. The group urged authorities to "stop holding people arbitrarily".

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