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Saudi anti-terrorism law casts wide net

The detention of prominent Saudi rights activist Waleed Abulkhair has drawn attention to the controversial anti-terror law.
Members of Saudi special forces act a scene simulating kidnapping a man by terrorists during a training session in Darma, west of Riyadh March 26, 2014. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser (SAUDI ARABIA - Tags: MILITARY) - RTR3IPQA

After the adoption of the new Saudi law criminalizing terrorism and its financing, rights activist Waleed Abulkhair wrote on his Twitter account: “I wonder who will be classified as the No. 1 terrorist? Who will have the honor to be sentenced under this law?” But Abulkhair did not anticipate that that person would be him.

According to a statement issued by the Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia, which is headed by Abulkhair, the seventh session of his trial was held in Jeddah on May 25. This came after the presiding judge decided that the rights activist would be tried under the anti-terror law issued on Dec. 16, 2013, because his pro-rights actions and criticism of authorities constituted an act of terror.

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