The Saudi Arabian authorities must release or charge with an internationally recognizable offence a Shi’a cleric reportedly held for "inciting public opinion", Amnesty International said today.
Sheikh Tawfiq Jaber Ibrahim al-'Amr was arrested on 3 August, reportedly over statements he had made in sermons during Friday prayers although no formal charges are known to have been made.
The cleric was previously arrested in February following a sermon he gave calling for reforms in Saudi Arabia including a constitutional monarchy, fair distribution of jobs, and an end to discrimination against religious minorities.
"It would appear that this cleric has been arrested in connection to his continuing calls for reform," said Philip Luther, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International.
"If so, he would be a prisoner of conscience detained solely for peacefully exercising his right to freedom of expression and should be released immediately and unconditionally."
Sheikh Tawfiq Jaber Ibrahim al-‘Amr was arrested on 3 August while on his way home from a mosque in the city of al-Hafouf, al-Ahsa governorate.