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Vigil for Raif Badawi and Waleed Abulkhair

25 September 2015, 9:00 am10:00 am

English PEN is continuing to hold regular vigils outside the Embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in London in support of Raif Badawi of Waleed Abulkhair on the last Friday of every month.

Raif Badawi, an activist and blogger, was convicted in May 2014 for insulting Islam and founding a liberal website. He received a fine of 1 million riyals (£175,000) and a ten-year prison sentence. In addition, the court in Jeddah sentenced Badawi to 1,000 lashes.

On 9 January 2015, after morning prayers, Badawi was flogged 50 times. This punishment was due to continue every Friday until he has received a total of 1,000 lashes. However, subsequent floggings have not gone ahead, initially because Badawi was deemed not to have recovered sufficiently from the previous punishment. No explanation has been given for the postponement of further floggings.

Meanwhile, his lawyer and brother-in-law Waleed Abulkhair is serving 15 years in prison for his peaceful activism.

English PEN staff are in regular contact with Badawi’s wife, Ensaf Haidar, who remains gravely concerned for their well-being. She is extremely grateful for PEN’s ongoing support and has urged us to keep fighting.

Please join us on Friday 25 September, from 9am. Activists are asked to meet at the Curzon Street entrance to the Embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Mayfair, London (note: the postal address of the Embassy is 30-32 Charles Street).

Let us know if you plan to attend and invite your friends and colleagues #FreeRaif #FreeWaleed


25 September 2015
9:00 am—10:00 am
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