The diary of a Saudi man, currently living in the United Kingdom, where the Religious Police no longer trouble him for the moment.
In Memory of the lives of 15 Makkah Schoolgirls, lost when their school burnt down on Monday, 11th March, 2002. The Religious Police would not allow them to leave the building, nor allow the Firemen to enter.
Thankfully, we have seen more Reformers being released. Apparently they have agreed not to talk about reform again. It's sad that they should have "agreed" to that, but it's a case of "there but for the grace of God", I'm sure most of us would agree to anything after being suspended upside-down and having the soles of our feet beaten, that's a great incentive to "see reason".
Saudi Reformers Silenced, Released
Let's remind ourselves of their crimes.
The professors, lawyers and writers detained last week in several Saudi cities had been critical in newspaper articles and TV appearances of the kingdom's strict religious environment and the slow pace of introducing reform.
Some of the reformists signed a letter addressed to Crown Prince Abdullah at the end of last month calling for a speedy introduction of political, economic and social reform
Others demanded the absolute monarchy be changed into a constitutional monarchy and that Saudi Arabia review its relations with the United States. And some criticized the new, National Human Rights Association, whose members also are appointed by the king, and declared their right to establish an independent rights group.
The episode has pointed out, if ever we expected otherwise, the total impotence of the new National Human Rights Association, who did absolutely nothing. "The detentions were a test of the association's ability to function as a neutral body. Several of its members refused to comment on the detentions, telling The Associated Press it was too early to do so.......Many Saudi intellectuals and liberals have cast doubt on the association's ability to function as an independent body when many of its members hold government jobs, are former civil servants or close to the government. Its head, Abdullah al-Obeid, is a member of the Consultative Council" (aka the "Poodle Parliament").
Nobody has published official numbers,but let's hope that is all of them out. What a blot and a stain on the honor of our Country.