SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) — Anti-government protesters have once again staged demonstrations in Saudi Arabia, as anger flares in the kingdom over Riyadh’s harsh crackdown on dissent in recent months.
The protests come in defiance of Saudi officials’ strict ban on any anti-regime gatherings in the kingdom.
The demonstrators called for the release of prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nemr al-Nemr who was attacked, injured and arrested by the security forces of the Al Saud regime while driving from a farm to his house in the Qatif region of the Eastern Province on July 8.
Since February 2011, protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis in Saudi Arabia, mainly in Qatif and the town of Awamiyah in the Eastern Province, primarily calling for the release of all political prisoners, freedom of expression and assembly, and an end to widespread discrimination.
However, the demonstrations have turned into protests against the repressive Al Saud regime, especially since November 2011, when Saudi security forces killed five protesters and injured many others in the Province.
According to Human Rights Watch, the Saudi regime “routinely represses expression critical of the government.”
On August 13, Swedish Defense Minister Karin Enstrom criticized Riyadh for its human rights violations, describing Saudi Arabia as “an authoritarian regime and an absolute monarchy where serious human rights crimes are committed.” —www.shafaqna.com/English
Source: Tehran Times