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The European-Saudi Organisation for Human Rights will participate, along with other organizations, in a symposium on the sidelines of the 42nd session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, in September 2019.
Participating in the symposium, entitled “Crisis at the Human Rights Council: Arbitrary executions and arrests in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” are Tyler Pry of Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain, Yahya Assiri of ALQST, Inès Osman of the MENA Rights Group, and Ali al-Dubisi of ESOHR. Also in attendance will be Areej al-Sadhan, the sister of Abd al-Rahman al-Sadhan, who is forcibly disappeared in Saudi Arabia, and Agnès Callamard, the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions, is expected to make a video presentation.
The symposium will take place amid the increasing frequency of arbitrary arrests targeting dozens of male and female human rights defenders, activists, and academics since 2011, as well as arbitrary executions – including the mass execution of 37 people in April 2019, including 3 minors – and the documented torture of dozens of detainees, several of whom have been the subject of complaints by United Nations Special Rapporteurs.
The symposium will discuss the practices of forced disappearance, arbitrary arrest, and execution in Saudi Arabia and the role of these practices in limiting any attempts at and demands for reform. Participants will also try to place these abuses within the framework of Saudi Arabia’s recent participation as a member nation of the Human Rights Council with the goal of increasing international pressure on the country.