close
Advertisement
Can't connect right now! retry

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!
AFP
July 13, 2018
Advertisement

Top Islamist cleric ‘detained by Saudi authorities’

World

AFP
July 13, 2018

Share

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia has detained a prominent Islamist scholar, activists said on Thursday, in a widening crackdown on dissent in the ultra-conservative kingdom, which is undergoing sweeping economic and social reforms.

Rights campaigners and online activists said Sheikh Safar al-Hawali, a Sunni Islamist scholar and leading figure in Saudi Arabia’s Islamic Sahwa reformist movement, had been taken into custody.

They did not give further details about the case of the scholar, who has pushed a line of anti-Americanism and Islamic rule. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, named heir to the throne in June 2017, has spearheaded a string of reforms over the past year aimed at improving his country’s image and economy. The changes have coincided with a widening crackdown on all forms of opposition.

Authorities last month arrested a number of prominent women’s rights campaigners, just days before the kingdom ended a decades-long ban on women driving. Hawali was jailed in the 1990s for opposing his country’s ties to US troops leading a military operation to expel Iraqi forces from Kuwait.

In 1993, he was banned from public speaking and dismissed from his academic posts along with prominent cleric Sheikh Salman al-Awda. While no charges were pressed, the two were accused of aiming to incite civil disobedience. They were arrested again in 1994 but soon released.

Advertisement

Comments

Advertisement

Topstory minus plus

Opinion minus plus

Newspost minus plus

Editorial minus plus

National minus plus

World minus plus

Sports minus plus

Business minus plus

Karachi minus plus

Lahore minus plus

Islamabad minus plus

Peshawar minus plus