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Saudi Arabia: Woman Human Rights Defender Loujain Al-Hathloul featured in CIVICUS' #StandAsMyWitness campaign

'Why you should #StandAsMyWitness', July 18, 2020

Loujain Al-Hathloul is a Saudi human rights defender, writer and activist who has been campaigning for the rights of women to drive and the end of the male guardianship system in Saudi Arabia. In 2015, she was ranked third in the most influential Arab Woman by Arabian Business Magazine, shortly after she was arrested for attempting to drive between the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia – raising the profile on the discriminatory gender laws that banned women from driving. Her activism work defending human rights in Saudi Arabia has included bold campaigns for women’s participation in public life, including running for local elections in December 2015. This election was the first to include women, but ultimately she was barred from running... Recently, concerns have been raised by her family, during the COVID-19 pandemic, that the state has not protected her basic human rights in detention, including over four weeks of no-contact with my family. During their detention, WHRDs have also faced torture and sexual harassment. Despite this targeting of women’s rights and human rights activists, Saudi Arabia has continued to white-wash its image, including through hosting major sporting events, the G20 Summit and international concerts...

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