2008 Archives

February 2nd, 2013

The First Tulip: The Human Rights Defenders Tulip was created by the Dutch government to honour individuals who take great risks to defend human rights. On 10 December 2008 the first Human Rights Tulip was presented by the Dutch foreign minister, Maxime Verhagen. The Tulip was awarded to Justine Masika Bihamba from Goma in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Ms Masika runs an organisation devoted to stopping the widespread rape of women in the conflict zone in eastern Congo.

The award ceremony took place in the Ridderzaal in The Hague on 10 December, International Human Rights Day, where there was a special focus on the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Ibrahim Al Mugaiteeb, President of Human Rights First Society, Saudi Arabia was a nominee for this honour and was in attendance at the celebrations.

Hunger Strike Defense teams for jailed Saudi Activists, who advocate constitutional reform, civil society and human rights, announced the final list of names of human right activists and citizens who answered our call and decided to participate in the hunger strike.

Call for a national conference of human rights workers (By Sabah Abdul Hadi ~ Saudi Gazette)  April 17, 2008  DAMMAM – A national conference of all activists and human rights workers is being called for to serve as a platform for them to meet, discuss, exchange views, and share experiences on human rights issues. “It is time for all activists and human rights workers to meet and discuss human rights issues,” said Ibrahim Al-Mugaiteeb, founder of the Human Rights First Society. He said there are groups and individuals who work hard for the cause of human rights.  “It is time for all of them to meet, know each other, interact, and, in the process, come out with common stands.”

2008 Update Saudi Arabia’s Curriculum of Intolerance This report compares textbooks from the Saudi Ministry of Education, which are posted on its website as this is issued, with those analyzed in our 2006 study, Saudi Arabia’s Curriculum of Intolerance, and shows that the same violent and intolerant teachings against other religious believers noted in 2006 remain in the current texts. All of these textbooks have been reissued at least once and all but two of them reissued twice, yet overall the changes to the passages in question have been minimal, and the degree of substantive change has been negligible. Taken together, the revisions that have been made amount to moving around the furniture, not cleaning the house. This analysis is issued as the deadline nears for the removal of intolerant teachings from all Saudi textbooks. This commitment stems from the Saudi government’s “confirmation” of policies that were publicly announced and lauded as “significant developments” by the U.S. State Department in July 2006, and are to be implemented in full by the start of the 2008-2009 chool year.  More…

KSA ARRESTS BLOGGER, BLOCKS HIS BLOG (Cairo, 14 Jan 2008 ) The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information said today the Saudi authorities yesterday, Thursday, detained Hamoud Bin Saleh and blocked his blog ” Masihi Saudi  due to his opinions and announcement at his blog that he converted from Islam to Christianity.

Based on information obtained by ANHRI, the Saudi authorities jailed the young blogger at the infamous Eleisha political prison in Riyadh; a prison which in 2004 witnessed the arrest of the reformists Matrouk el Falih, Ali el Domini and Eissa al Hamed.  More…

Madrid Interfaith International Conference – Press Release – August 17th,2008  Human Rights First Society has followed with great interest the Interfaith International Conference held in Madrid on July 18th,2008 .  HRFS endorses the courageous initiative taken by King Abdullah Bin Abdul-Aziz and emphasizes that this act of courage should be manifested by religious tolerance on the ground in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia both for Muslim minorities and non-Muslims with other faiths, beliefs and schools of thought.  We hope that this conference will not be a one time event, and that the spirit behind calling this conference is to assert and intensify more tolerance to achieve peace and stability world wide.  Drawing from the spirit of this initiative HRFS  reiterates the call for a National Human Rights conference of Human Rights Supporters in Saudi Arabia.

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