Clerics to the Nation: Don’t Keep Mum on Regime
Leading Shia clerics have called
on people in Saudi Arabia not to remain silent
on the recent killing of pro-democracy activists
by Riyadh regime forces in the Eastern Province.
Sheikh Abdul Karim al-Habil and Seyyed Hashem
al-Shakhs condemned the atrocities and stressed
that actions must be taken to prevent the
recurrence of such incidents.
“We should not stand watching as if we do not
care about anything. All of us from every class
or community should try our best to put an end
to that tragedy,” said Sheikh al-Habil.
Al-Shakhs, for his part, said, “Shedding
innocent blood, killing children and scaring
people is not acceptable in any country,
especially in the Islamic countries, according
to our religion and principles.”
On December 20, at least five people were killed
by Saudi forces in the Shia-majority town of
Awamia in the Qatif region while several people
were also arrested. The Saudi Interior Ministry
has only confirmed four deaths.
Media reports suggest that the victims were
pro-democracy activists and anti-regime
There have been numerous demonstrations in Saudi
Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province since 2011,
with the protestors calling for political reform
and an end to widespread discrimination. Several
people have been killed and many others have
been injured or arrested during the
Similar demonstrations have also been held in
Riyadh and the holy city of Medina over the past
The Persian Gulf monarchy has come under fire
from international human rights organizations,
which have criticized it for failing to address
the rights situation in the kingdom. Critics say
the country shows zero tolerance toward dissent.