Samar Badawi

Samar Badawi

Personal information

Name: Samar Badawi

Name in Arabic: سمر بدوي

Date of Birth: 28 June 1981

Gender: Female

Marital status: Single

Profession: Human rights activist , Women’s rights activist

Place of residence: Jeddah

Arrest and jail information

Date of arrest:30 July 2018

Manner of arrest: Arrested in an armed police raid on her home in the early hours of the morning and taken to a detention centre of the State Security Presidency

Where held: Dhahban Central Prison, Jeddah

Trial information

Alleged crimes: She participated in the 2011–2012 women's driving campaign and has further assisted women drivers with police and court procedures.

Victim's charges: Communicating with embassies and entities abroad hostile to Saudi Arabia; unlicensed human rights activism

Court: Criminal Court

Verdict: Ongoing

Date of verdict: Ongoing

Updates on trial: On 20 February 2020, the second hearing of the case of woman human rights defender Samar Badawi was held at the Specialized Criminal Court. International observers were not allowed to attend the hearing.

Following her arrest on 30 July 2018, the woman human rights defender was subjected to a prolonged investigation, during which she was tortured and sexually harassed. The first hearing of her case was held on 27 June 2019. She is facing charges including sharing information related to Saudi women’s rights with foreign organisations and officials. If found guilty, she could face up to 20 years in prison. She is currently held at Dhahban Prison.

Previous arrests: Samar Badawi was arrested in 2010 on a charge of disobeying her father and was imprisoned for six months. In 2016 she was arrested and briefly held in Dhahban Central Prison for interrogation; in 2017 she was again summoned for questioning.

Human Rights Violations

Violations: Arbitrary arrest/ detention , Torture and ill-treatment, Sexual Violence, placed in solitary confinement

Violation details: Subjected to brutal torture, sexual assault and placed in solitary confinement for prolonged period of time


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