No One Is Safe: How Saudi Arabia Makes Dissidents Disappear

The assassination of Jamal Khashoggi was no aberration. A Vanity Fair investigation reveals how Saudi Arabia attempts to abduct, repatriate—and sometimes murder—citizens it regards as enemies of the state………..’

‘………For his part, Assiri, the Air Force officer turned online dissident, has no regrets about leaving his homeland. After moving to London, Assiri—who had been in frequent touch with Khashoggi in the last months of his life—did the unthinkable. In 2013, he revealed himself online as Abu Fares. Lately, he has become one of Saudi Arabia’s most respected and influential human rights defenders, having started a small organization called ALQST. He maintains a network of activists and researchers inside the kingdom who secretly investigate evidence of torture, human rights abuses, and information about disappeared citizens.

Assiri’s fate, he admits, was sealed the day he was confronted by his commanding officer. Had he not lied convincingly, he might be languishing in a Saudi prison like his friend Waleed Abu al-Khair, an activist he first met in a chat room 13 years ago. Today, Waleed’s picture hangs in Assiri’s office and serves as a chilling token of the perils that come with being one of Saudi Arabia’s hunted.

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