Saudi reformers calling for constitutional monarchy get prison terms

[JURIST] Three Saudi reformers on trial for sedition and using Western tactics in calling for the institution of a limited constitutional monarchy in Saudi Arabia were sentenced to prison terms of six to nine years Sunday. Human rights observers and family members of the accused were barred from the courtroom when the judgment was rendered; the trial itself had been closed to the general public [JURIST report]. In April, he New York-based monitoring group Human Rights Watch called on President Bush [HRW letter; background press release] to ask visiting Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz to have the three released. Other reformers arrested with the three last year had been released after promising to stop their public lobbying for political change. AFP has more.



 

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