‘Alarming’: UN consultants anxious by well being of jailed Saudi activist


Al-Hathloul, arrested in 2018, has been on starvation strike for every week over situations of her extended detention.

The well being standing of jailed Saudi ladies’s proper activist Loujain al-Hathloul, who has been on starvation strike since final week, is quickly worsening, UN consultants mentioned, calling for her “quick” launch.

Al-Hathloul, 31, was arrested together with a few dozen different feminine activists in Might 2018, simply weeks earlier than Saudi Arabia lifted a decades-old ban on feminine drivers.

She started refusing meals on October 26. Al-Hathloul went on a week-long starvation strike in August over the situations of her extended detention.

Her deteriorating well being was “deeply alarming”, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination towards Ladies (CEDAW) mentioned in a press release on Thursday.

The committee, made up of 23 unbiased consultants, additionally voiced severe concern “by latest info regarding the situations of Ms al-Hathloul’s extended detention, together with stories that she is just not allowed common contact along with her household”.


A number of the activists arrested along with her have been provisionally launched, whereas others stay in detention amid what campaigners name opaque courtroom trials over fees that embody contact with overseas media, diplomats and human rights teams.

The professional-government media branded al-Hathloul and different jailed activists as “traitors” and her household alleges she confronted sexual harassment and torture in detention, together with electrical shocks and waterboarding.

Saudi authorities vigorously deny the costs.

Three months earlier than her arrest, al-Hathloul met with CEDAW to share her observations on the state of girls’s rights in Saudi Arabia.

The rights consultants voiced outrage that the nationwide security-related fees towards her have been partly justified by her engagement with the committee.

“Human rights defenders have the correct to communication with the UN, and they need to achieve this free from concern or retribution of any type,” they mentioned.

Saudi Arabia had assured the committee in February this yr that al-Hathloul’s trial would happen a month later, however the listening to has been postponed a number of instances, the assertion added.