Hafez Abu Saada, chairman of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) board of trustees - File photo
CAIRO – 11 September 2017: The Chairperson of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR), Hafez Abu Seada, condemned the deliberate violation of human rights, beating, and humiliation of Qatari citizen Hamad Abdul Hadi Al-Marri after he returned to Doha from Hajj.
Abu Seada said in a statement that he has followed the case of Al-Marri since the appearance of a humiliating video and verified that the person in the video was Al-Marri, who has just left Saudi Arabia after completing Hajj under the program of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.
The Qatari victim entered the Saudi Kingdom through the Salwa border crossing which was opened especially for Qatari pilgrims.
Abu Seada pointed out that the attack on Al-Marri came in response to his recent remarks where he applauded the Saudi security measures and facilitations provided by the kingdom for pilgrims.
He stressed that this incident shows the Qatari government’s disrespect to human rights and the freedom to practice religious rights including performing pilgrimage.
A recent video of Al-Marri was circulated on social media showing him being captured and assaulted in the middle of the desert. It was proven to have been staged by employees from Qatar’s interior ministry.
Earlier, the Gulf Association for Rights and Freedoms warned the Qatari government against detaining Qatari pilgrims, while demanding that their safety be guaranteed.
The association also demanded of the international community to take deterrent measures against Qatar and protect the pilgrims.
The Qatari government had attempted to politicize the Hajj matters on the Saudi territories, but high-profile talks between the Saudi leadership and Qatar’s Sheikh Abdullah bin Ali Al Thani, a Qatari royal family member, has resulted in easing border restrictions for Qatari pilgrims.
Saudi Arabia reopened the Salwa border crossing for the entry of Qatari pilgrims and covered all costs of transporting pilgrims from Dammam’s King Fahad International Airport and Al-Ahsa International Airport under the Program of the Guests of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud for Hajj and Umrah.
Since the four Arab countries severed their ties with Doha over accusations of the country’s support for terror and meddling in the internal affairs of its neighbors, many world leaders and top diplomats, including the emir of Kuwait, have tried mediating relations between them, but none have been successful in ending the rift.