Arab news

Saudi Arabia releases Murtaja Qureiris, once the youngest political prisoner​​ in the kingdom — ESOHR

His case was first highlighted in a special CNN report aired in 2019, detailing how Saudi authorities arrested Qureiris when she was 13 years old, three years after she was accused of participating in a bicycle protest during the 2011 Arab Spring. 10. ​

After nearly four years in detention, he was presented with a charge sheet recommending the death penalty before his 18th birthday.

Prosecutors claimed that Qureiris belonged to an “extremist terror group” and used violence during protests, including alleged aiding in the making of Molotov cocktails. Qurayri denied all allegations made against him.

He was 10 years old when he was alleged to have committed at least one of the acts mentioned in the criminal complaint. He was accused of accompanying his activist brother, Ali Qureris, on a motorcycle to a police station in the eastern Saudi Arabian city of Awamiya, where Ali allegedly threw Molotov cocktails at the facility.

Saudi Arabia executes man for alleged underage crime
Saudi Arabia announced that in 2020, as part of a royal decree, it will abolish the death penalty for juvenile delinquents. According to a statement from the state-sponsored Human Rights Commission (HRC), anyone sentenced to death after being convicted for crimes committed at an early age will be sentenced to no more than 10 years in juvenile prison. time.

In 2019, at the age of 18, Qureiris was convicted and sentenced to prison, but the Saudi government has not disclosed the charge or charges against which he was convicted. A source familiar with the matter told CNN that he had officially escaped the death penalty.

CNN reached out to the Saudi government for comment.

A source familiar with the matter told CNN in 2019 that Qureiris will launch in 2022.

International pressure on the kingdom began to mount, and multiple international rights groups condemned his arrest after CNN reported on Qureiris’s case. In 2019, the Austrian parliament voted to close a Saudi-backed center for interfaith dialogue to protest the arrest of Qureiris.

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