Today’s News Concerning Raif Badawi

(This is a re-blog of today’s post along with a statement from Raif Badawi’s wife. I will have more as details become available, on Facebook and elsewhere, and I will provide links.)

Raif Badawi’s wife, Ensaf Haidar, published an important statement at noon today. To sum it up, Raif has been moved to a different prison, and he started a hunger strike on Tuesday.
What this means—for today, for tomorrow, or beyond—is unclear.
Hacktivist Culture published a worthwhile list of things to be mindful of at this time:

* Do not tweet hateful words at Saudi Arabia or their Judiciary
* Do not feel dejected and sad, what we need now is optimism
* Tweet or post simple words of love to Ensaf and their children
* Do not engage in sharing rumors, old or new
* Do not flood us with questions that we still do not have the answer to.


Elham Manea is Raif’s media representative; Ensaf is not. Ensaf will not be able to reply to questions or to every expression of support. I know that she appreciates every message of support.

Ensaf’s statement reads as follows and I am running it as-is:

TOP URGENT: Saudi Prison administration transferred Raif Badawi to a new isolated prison and Raif started a hunger strike since Tuesday
The prison administration transferred today my husband Raif Badawi to a new isolated prison called Prison Shabbat Central, located in a deserted and isolated area—around 87 KM from Jeddah City.
This prison is designed for prisoners, whose verdict has been confirmed with a final Adjudication. The Saudi government has repeatedly declared that Raif’s case is under review and is yet to be decided by the Supreme Court.
We express our surprise at this decision especially after the Swiss Secretary of Foreign Affairs Yves Rossier announcement on 28 November that a royal pardon is in the works. And we are very alarmed at the prison administration decision to transfer my husband to the Shabbat Central and fear it may lead to the resumption of his flogging.
As a result of this decision, Raif started in Tuesday a hunger trike and we hold the prison administration responsible for any harm that Raif may suffer.
We take this opportunity to call on his Majesty King Salman to act on his promises and pardon my husband, end his and his family’s ordeal and unite him with his wife and children.”

Please comment here. Thank you, Mark.

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