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Saudi Arabia: Travel ban on human rights defenders Mr Fahad Al-Orani, Dr Abdulla Al-Hamid, Mr Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi and Dr Matrouk Al-Faleh
Human rights defenders Mr Fahad Al-Orani, Dr Abdulla Al-Hamid, Mr Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi and Dr Matrouk Al-Faleh continue to be subjected to a travel ban in retaliation for their human rights activities in Saudi Arabia.
Fahad Al-Orani, along with Dr Abdulla Al-Hamid and Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi, are co-founders of the Saudi Civil & Political Rights Association (ACPRA), established in October 2009.
Fahad Al-Orani is also a member of the on-line forum 'Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia-Al-Marsad', of which Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi is a supervisor. Dr Matrouk Al-Faleh is a professor of Political Science at the King Sa’ud University in Riyad and a prominent member of the Paris-based Arab Commission for Human Rights.
Fahad Al-Orani, aged 43, has reported to Front Line that he is still not permitted to leave the country due to a travel ban imposed on him. He was last prevented from leaving the country on 12 February 2010, at King Khalid International Airport.
On that occasion, Fahad Al-Orani sent a wire to the King of Saudi Arabia complaining that he was prevented from travelling despite having received a promise from an official at the Ministry of Interior that the ban had been lifted on 24 June 2009.
Fahad Al-Orani has twice been detained - in 2005 and 2007 - for participating in petitions and activities calling for basic freedoms and human rights in Saudi Arabia. He has taken part in the defence of detained human rights defenders such as Matrouk Al-Faleh and Judge Suliman Ibrahim Al-Reshoudi.
Dr Abdulla Al-Hamid and Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi are also currently prevented from travelling. Dr Abdulla Al-Hamid is a former professor of comparative literature and a well-known writer and campaigner for human rights and civil liberties, and has been detained five times since 1990 as a result of his human rights activities.
Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi, 32, from Barida/Qaseem, was previously subjected to a travel ban in 2009, which was renewed on 2 March 2010 when he was prevented from leaving Saudi Arabia en route to Qatar. Front Line previously issued appeals concerning Mohammed Saleh El-Bejadi on 6 August 2009 and 26 April 2009 .
Front Line has also been informed that Dr Matrouk Al-Faleh is also prevented from travelling. Dr Matrouk Al-Faleh was released on 11 January 2009 after spending 235 days in arbitrary detention, apparently in retaliation for his human rights activities. Front Line issued an appeal on his case on 21 May 2008.
Front Line believes that the travel ban imposed against aforementioned human rights defenders is a direct result of their legitimate and peaceful work in defence of human rights.