Qatar arrests Hajj pilgrim Hamad al-Marri, holds him incommunicado

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Qatar has reportedly arrested a pilgrim upon his return from Saudi Arabia after performing this year’s Hajj as a guest of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

Hamad al-Marri, who gave an interview on Saudi Television networks while he was in Mecca, has been held incommunicado from his relatives and lawyers.

A recent video of him being allegedly captured and assaulted in the middle of the desert was proven to have been staged by employees from Qatar’s interior ministry.

Saudi Arabia’s National Society for Human Rights (NSHR) released a statement on Sunday condemning the violation of a--Marri’s rights after being humiliated as a result of the video released showing him suffering from humiliating insults and physical attacks.


NSHR said that it has followed al-Marri’s case since the video of him being attack was posted on social media and has verified that the person appearing in the video is the Qatari citizen himself. He was recently in Saudi Arabia to complete the Hajj pilgrimage as a guest of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and left Saudi Arabia safely on September 6.

On August 24, al-Marri had entered the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia through the Salwa border crossing, which was opened exceptionally for the reception of Qatari pilgrims. He had entered the kingdom according to the passport number (01332918).

“We call on the National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar and all international human rights organizations to do their duty to ensure the disclosure of the fate of this Qatari citizen and to protect him from the attacks and violations that have been committed against him, and to ensure his safety and not being subjected to pressure imposed by certain political dictates because of his right to perform Hajj and his right to freedom of expression and to ensure that all those who exploited their political power, abuse and torture are prosecuted,” NSHR said in a statement.

“We also call on all institutions and institutions in Qatar to work hard to protect Hamad al-Marri and prosecute those who assaulted him regardless of their positions and forced him to film after entering the Qatari territory, and to facilitate his return to his home and his family and his right to travel and freedom of expression and the enjoyment of all natural guarantees and rights guaranteed by international treaties and human rights conventions.”

Further condemnations

The Manama Center for Human Rights condemns the verbal and physical assault of Qatari citizen Hamad al-Marri, on the occasion of his Hajj and his visit to Saudi Arabia by the authorities in Doha in a flagrant violation of international human rights relating to freedom of religion and belief and all Islamic principles and customs.

The center deplores such public assault on an individual in light of the authorities’ failure in Doha to provide security and safety for its citizens. The Center also deplores Doha’s violation of the obligations contained in the convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, as well as the rights contained in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Arab Charter on Human Rights and the Gulf Declaration Of human rights.

The center also calls upon the National Human Rights Committee to monitor such grave violations in its country objectively and independently, in accordance with the purposes set out in the Paris Principles Governing the Independence of National Human Rights Institutions.

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