Saudi Arabia: Woman sentenced to more than 30 years in prison for using Twitter

Salma Al-Shehab, a Saudi student from the University of Leeds in the UK, was sentenced to 34 years in prison for having a Twitter account that followed and shared posts by dissidents and activists against Saudi Arabia. On vacation.

in the beginning, According to The Guardian, Salma was sentenced to three years in prison for the “crime” of using the website to “disrupt public unrest and civil and national security”. But on Monday, following a prosecutor’s request to consider other crimes, a second trial court handed down a new sentence: 34 years in prison and a 34-year travel ban.

According to the English newspaper, which translated the court records, the new charges accuse Shehab of “facilitating public unrest and those who seek to disrupt civil and national security by following his Twitter accounts”. Tweets.

In a brief consultation on social networks of a 34-year-old Saudi mother of two children, Shehab does not seem to have an activist profile, and on Instagram she shows her personal life, presenting herself as an oral hygienist and doctor. Student. Already on Twitter, there are some shares of Saudi dissidents living in the diaspora, who are demanding the release of political prisoners in the kingdom.

Twitter declined to comment on the case when journalist Stephanie Kirchgasner confronted the Guardian about the potential influence of Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Dalal, who owns more than 5% of the social network through Kingdom Holding.

The case comes just weeks after Joe Biden’s much-criticized visit to Saudi Arabia, in which many activists confronted the US president with various human rights abuses by the regime of Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

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