Saudi writer Abdulaziz al-Dukhail released after year-long detention over tweet
Abdulaziz Al-Dukhail, a writer and former politician, went missing in April 2020 along with two other public intellectuals after they offered sympathy over the death of human rights defender Abdullah al-Hamid, in what was believed to be in detention for their implied criticism of the state.
Hamid, a veteran activist, died last year on 23 April after suffering a stroke in detention while serving an 11-year sentence, sparking a torrent of criticism from international campaigners.
Two days after his death, Al-Dukhail tweeted a tribute to Hamid, calling him a man who was "devoted to his country", which subsequently lead to his disappearance.
Abdulaziz al-Dukhail, detained since April 2020 for expressing sympathy over the death of rights activist Abdullah al-Hamid, has been released by the #Saudi authorities.— ALQST for Human Rights (@ALQST_En) July 9, 2021
We call on the authorities to release all individuals connected to the arrests & all prisoners of conscience. pic.twitter.com/4XDVJ2xoiN
"Dr Abdullah Al-Hamid, the man who was devoted to his country and to values, morals and genuine patriotism, ascended to his Lord, but has not left the hearts of the faithful of the believers of the homeland, through the offering of advice without fear or glory and without personal interest. May God have mercy on you, Abu Bilal," the tweet read.
On Thursday, Saudi human rights group ALQST announced that he had been released by the Saudi authorities after over a year of disappearance.
"Abdulaziz al-Dukhail, detained since April 2020 for expressing sympathy over the death of rights activist Abdullah al-Hamid, has been released by the #Saudi authorities," the group tweeted.
"We call on the authorities to release all individuals connected to the arrests & all prisoners of conscience," ALQST added.