Detained Saudi women activists appear in court

Ten Saudi women detained last year in a sweeping crackdown on activists appeared in court on Wednesday, an official said, intensifying scrutiny of the kingdom’s human rights record.

Prominent activists Loujain al-Hathloul, Hatoon al-Fassi and Aziza al-Yousef were among those who attended Riyadh’s criminal court after being held for nearly a year without charge. The women would hear the charges raised against them ahead of a trial, court president Ibrahim al-Sayari told reporters and Western diplomats — who were not allowed to attend the first hearing of the trial. Amnesty International and Ms. Hathloul’s family feared on Tuesday that the women’s rights activist would be charged with terrorism.


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