British public opinion began to lose patience with the treatment of women in some Persian Gulf countries, and the pressure shifted to the government of Boris Johnson. The campaign for the release of Princess Latifa and her sister Shamsa, carried out by her father, the Emir of Dubai, Sheikh Mohamed Bin Rashid al Maktoum, is now accompanied by petitions on behalf of Saudi Princess Basmah Bint Saud and her daughter. Sharif. Both, who have a British residence permit, have been imprisoned for two years in the Al Hair maximum security prison in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
“Princess Basmah and her daughter Souhoud resided in the UK for many happy years and played an active role in British civil society. In this condition, we ask for your help, ”says the letter sent to Chancellor Dominic Raab and the Commonwealth Secretary General. (Commonwealth of Nations), Patricia Scotland, by the princess’s legal adviser, Henri Estramant, and the organization’s president Grant freedom, Lucy Rae. “We believe that the Saudi authorities are currently particularly sensitive to any diplomatic pressure and that is why we are convinced that an intervention in this direction would make a difference,” say the signatories.
Both the princess, who completed 57 years of this second-fair, how long her line will become the city of the Comunidade das Nações in 2015, when she will acquire the nationality of the Caribbean island of Dominica through an economic investment exchange, so that she may have an authorization of residence no UK. . Saudi Arabia does not recognize dual citizenship and the two women were arrested in March 2019, when they planned to travel to Switzerland for the princess to receive medical treatment. “The princess has a chronic heart disease and her health is deteriorating. He urgently needs therapeutic assistance. The family fears that without adequate care he may die and that his life will depend on his release, ”says the letter sent to the British Government.
The private plane prepared to transport the two women never took off. The newspaper A B C exclusively posted security camera footage on the landing of the apartment where the princess lived in Jeddah. Eight armed men were observed in the moments prior to their arrest. The Saudi government accused Basmah of trying to leave the country illegally and his daughter Sohoud of assaulting an agent while carrying out his activity. All the charges are false. There is currently no formal accusation. Nor was it true that they forged their passports. In fact, the daughter was arrested simply for trying to prevent her mother from being arrested, “Lucy Rae told EL PAÍS. They allowed her to go to the hospital, but she is still very ill. His contacts abroad are very limited. They barely allow her two minutes of telephone conversation with her son a week, ”says the activist.
Al Hair Prison carries an infamous legend. It is a maximum security center where approximately 5,000 prisoners reside. There, feminist fighter Loujain Al Hathloul remained in prison until she was released last February. She claims that she was tortured during her arrest and that Saudi officials are not allowing her to leave the country.
Daughter of King Saud, deposed by her brother Faisal, Princess Basmah tried, during all this time, without success, to recover the lands and the billions of euros that belonged to her father and the entire branch of his family. Her enmity with Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salmán, who consolidated his power by arresting several rival relatives, political activists and some religious figures, was compounded by the princess’s criticism of the regime. “Princess Basmah has been defending human rights around the world for years. We believe that your work is part of the reasons for your arrest. His daughter has been in prison for two years in horrible conditions simply for supporting her mother. We believe that it is something despicable ”, denounced the allies of Basmah to the British Government.
Pressure on the Saudi regime increased last week when the US government of Joe Biden decided to disqualify a series of reports from its secret services in which it claimed that the Crown Prince, known as MSB, approved the operation of which he was a journalist. Jamal Khashoggi was assassinated and quartered at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in 2018.