Saudi Arabia releases princess after three years in captivity

A Saudi princess who was imprisoned in Riyadh for nearly three years has been released. A human rights organization announced this on Saturday.

Basmah bint Saud, 57, a daughter of the second Saudi king, has been incarcerated in an infamous Saudi prison since March 2019. She has now been released with her daughter, says ALQST, a London-based human rights organization specializing in Saudi Arabia.

The NGO emphasized in the statement that the woman was detained for three years without any charges being filed against her. ALQST also deplores the Saudi government’s “negligence” in monitoring the princess’s health.

Medical assistance

In April 2020, Basmah bint Saud had already, via Twitter, asked King Salman and the powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to be released because she was in urgent need of medical help. The tweets disappeared after 48 hours.

Basmah bint Saud was known for many years as one of the few top-ranking Saudis who didn’t mince words and criticized the way women are treated. She had also spoken out in favor of a constitutional monarchy, and against “particularly dangerous” religious doctrine.

She is one of more than 100 children of King Saud, who was overthrown in 1964.

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