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AFP
September 24, 2020

Saudi dissidents launch party

World

AFP
September 24, 2020

London: A group of Saudi dissidents exiled in countries including Britain and the US announced on Wednesday the launch of an opposition party, the first organised political resistance under King Salman’s rule. Saudi Arabia is an absolute monarchy that does not tolerate any political opposition, but the formation of the National Assembly Party on the kingdom’s national day comes amid a growing state crackdown on dissent and freedom of expression.

The party is headed by prominent London-based human rights activist Yahya Assiri, and its members include academic Madawi al-Rasheed, researcher Saeed bin Nasser al-Ghamdi, US-based Abdullah Alaoudh and Canada-based Omar Abdulaziz, sources close to the outfit told AFP. The development is unlikely to unseat the Arab world’s most powerful monarchy, but the development poses a fresh challenge to Saudi Arabia’s rulers.