Posted on February 2021
“Loujain al-Hathloul leaves prison a hero – brutalised by the regime, but not broken. Her courage is an inspiration to us all. But she is not alone – the international community must not make the mistake of assuming that her release signals the end of the oppression of women human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia.
“Women activists such as Samar Badawi, Nour Abdulaziz and Nassima al-Sadah remain behind bars for the crime of campaigning for the basic human rights the rest of the world takes for granted. Fatima al-Nassif is in prison because she bandaged the wounded at a protest, Israa al-Ghomgham faced the death penalty for peaceful protest. Khadija al-Harbi was arrested when pregnant and forced to give birth in prison for nothing more than campaigning for quality. Others are in jail because the authorities objected to posts on social media.
“Until all of these women are free, the international community must not relent. It’s not just Loujain – there are many other women in prison today because they fought for human rights in Saudi Arabia. They must be freed, unconditionally. Nothing else will do.”