Saudi held in Morocco faces extradition to KSA, fears torture, death
A Saudi national currently in detention in Morocco fears getting extradited to Saudi Arabia.
A Saudi man in Morocco is facing extradition to Saudi Arabia, where he fears being tortured and possibly sentenced to death after being detained in the North African country, his brother said on Saturday.
26-year-old Hassan Al-Rabie was detained in Morocco on January 1 after the Saudi authorities sent an international notice about him in November, demanding that he be arrested over allegations of terrorism, said Ahmed Al-Rabie, his brother who resides in Canada.
According to Ahmed, Riyadh seeks to take his brother "hostage" in a bid to reveal the whereabouts of their brother, Munir, a human rights activist and prominent critic of the Saudi regime, AFP reported.
The brother also revealed that Hassan was arrested while attempting to leave Morocco for Turkey after having an international notice issued against him, accusing him of collaborating with a "terrorist to facilitate his (own) departure from the kingdom in an unregulated manner."
Saudi Arabia is no stranger to charging its own citizens with terrorism if they are opposed to the ruling family.
"Hassan is innocent and has nothing to do with these events," Ahmed told AFP, noting that he had been previously arrested in February 2021 with two other brothers.
According to Ahmed, Hassan fled the KSA in late 2021 and spent time in Indonesia, Oman, and Ukraine before settling in Morocco in November 2022. "I fear for Hassan's life if he is extradited to Saudi Arabia."
Saudi authorities executed in March 81 nationals and residents for allegedly being involved in "terrorism" within the Kingdom.
Saudi media outlets commented on the incident by publishing statements saying the local authorities "have committed the crime of executing 40 detainees in Al-Qatif in one single day."
The Saudi Interior Ministry claimed the convicts were guilty of holding "deviant beliefs and pledging allegiance to foreign organizations," adding that three of the Yemenis were guilty of "forming a terrorist organization belonging to Al-Houthi," the Yemeni popular army forces that Biden himself reversed the decision that deems them a "terrorist" organization.
Read next: Execution rate in Saudi Arabia doubles this year
A source in the Moroccan security forces told AFP the decision on whether Ahmed is extradited would be taken by the court of cassation.
Saudi Arabia executed twice as many people in 2022 as it did the year before, according to statistics released today by the AFP in November. International human rights organizations strongly denounced this sharp increase.
In 2021, Saudi Arabia carried out 69 death sentences. At the height of the Coronavirus outbreak in Saudi Arabia in 2020, there were 27 executions, and 187 people were put to death in 2019.
An Amnesty International report, analyzing the use of the death penalty worldwide, exposes Saudi’s 2022 execution tally is nearly double what was recorded in the previous year, 65 executions, which in itself was beyond double the 2020 numbers.
In a related context that further exposes Saudi Arabia's brutality and human rights violations, the Yemeni Al-Masirah news channel on November 12 revealed footage it said was of a "mass grave containing dozens of African victims killed by Saudi border guards."