Sunday, June 10, 2018

Read A letter from the Recently Arrested Women's Rights Activist in Saudi Arabia

Hana Al-Khamri @hanaalkhamri

Read the last letter from Nouf Abdulaziz @nofah1, Writer, Saudi women’s rights activist, and a fierce defender of prisoners of conscience. Arrested on Wednesday, June, the 6th 2018 and held incommunicado. ( See below for the Arabic version) Free  #Mayaa_AlZahrani #Nouf_Abdulaziz and their fellow activists 

“I never thought I would have to say this, to have this conversation, to try and justify myself and save what can be saved from the ruin that has overcome me and all that I love. I lose the words while I think about anything, and how to explain myself, mind, life, ambitions, dreams to people that now see me as a criminal who deserves what has happened to her. Maybe they see that being rid of me is the path to a better country, even though many of them do not know me or haven't even heard my name before, despite that they have they feel entitled to judge me unfairly.

It has been said often that people will criminalize the other that they do not know, if ruin or trouble overcomes him, they start to ask: what did he do? What is his crime? He must have committed a crime, for that makes it easier to excuse their inadequacy and failure in front of another person who is just like them, who has been violated and overcome with misery. This person that is just like them, who isn't different than them in any way, for he is someone's son or someone's husband, he lives a similar life and similarly strives to make something meaningful in his life, remembering that causes them to empathize and feel guilty for having judged so quickly. I will then urge you to empathize with me, I will shake your hand in peace and introduce you to myself:

Hello, my name is Nouf, and I am not a provoker, inciter nor a wrecker, nor a terrorist, nor a criminal or a traitor. I am the daughter to a great mother who suffers because of me -as I think- and a daughter to an honourable and honest family that has undergone a lot of harm because of what happened to me. I am a Postgraduate student that never got the chance to finish her education. I usually sum up myself with a few characteristics: a writer, a reading addict since I was six years old, my father tells me that I am intelligent; I am a quiet girl except for the questions that storm my mind.
In efforts to end this silly introduction, I will talk to you and share some of the questions that overcome my mind: Why is our homeland so small and tight, and why am I considered a criminal or an enemy that threatens it! I was never but a good citizen that loved her country and wished the best for it, a loving daughter and a hardworking student and a devoted worker, who never demeaned hated or envied anyone, so what about my country, and I don't know any fault other than that I am always thinking of each member of my community that has been treated unfairly, and I try to help them either by volunteering my time or effort, so how does it this become my fault? Me who always used to go to direct authorities that could help them, be it lawyers or human right NGOs, so how is that taken against me?!

How does corruption reach people to take advantage of me to attain promotions and to fill their pockets with money on my account, to end my life and present and future for absurd ends that isn't but corruption in a land, and to distort the image of my homeland to be an oppressive country without any critical thought or account to what they do, to whose benefit is all that is happening?
But it's okay, take my life, time, health and all that I own if that is for the benefit of my country, take my present, future and all that I love if that satisfies you and if it's for the good of our people, but don't take away my right to life and freedom and dignity, don't take away all that I have dreamt of and striven for just to be a scapegoat for the benefit of another.

And my God, if all that is happening makes you happy, then do unto me until you are satisfied, if what is happening does not please you, help our people to see clearly to know that their sister in the homeland is mistreated and she does not deserve other than her freedom, to maintain her dignity and to have the warmth in her parents arms, that has been taken away from her"

"لم أكن أظن يومًا أني سأكون مضطرة إلى هذا الحديث، لتبرير نفسي ولمحاولة انقاذ ما يمكن انقاذه من خراب حل بي وبكل من أحب، تتوه الكلمات مني وأنا أفكر بأي شيء أبدأ وكيف أشرح ذاتي وفكري حياتي وطموحاتي أحلامي وأمنياتي لأناس قد يروني الآن مجرمة أستحق ما يحصل لي وربما يرون أن الخلاص مني هو السبيل لوطن أفضل، مع أني موقنة أن الكثير لا يعرفوني ولم يسمعوا باسمي من قبل ورغم هذا يملكون الجرأة ليحكموا علي ظلمًا وعدوانًا .
كثيرًا ما قيل أن الناس يميلون لسرعة تجريم الآخر الذي يجهلونه، إذا حل به خراب أو مصيبة، فيبدؤون السؤال: ماذا فعل؟ ما هي جريمته؟ لابد أنه ارتكب جرمًا ما، فهذا يسهل عليهم تبرير عجزهم وخذلانهم أمام انسان مثله مثلهم انتهك حقه وحل به البلاء، هذا الإنسان الذي مثله مثلهم، لا يختلف عنهم بشيء في كونه ابن لأحدهم أب أو زوج انسان يعيش مثل حياتهم ويجتهد في أن يصنع بحياته شيئًا مرضيًا مثلهم، وهذا يدفعهم للتعاطف وتأنيب الضمير، لذا كي أدفعكم للتعاطف معي  سأصافحكم بسلام وأعرفكم على نفسي: 
السلام عليكم، اسمي نوف وأنا لست بمحرضة ولا مخربة ولا ارهابية ولا مجرمة ولا خائنة.
ابنة لأم عظيمة تعاني بسببي -كما أظن- وابنة لعائلة كريمة شريفة تضررت بسبب ما حصل لي، وطالبة لدراسات عليا لم أحصل على فرصة لاكمالها، وأختصر نفسي بعدة صفات، كاتبة ومدمنة لقراءة الكتب منذ أن بلغت السادسة من عمري، ذكية كما يقول أبي، وفتاة هادئة غير أن الأسئلة تعصف بي.
تجاوزًا لهذه المقدمة البلهاء سأتحدث معكم وأشارككمدبعض الأسئلة التي تعتمل بصدري دائمًا: لماذا يضيق بنا صدر الوطن، ولماذا أعتبر أنا عدوًا ومجرمًا أهدد أمنه! 
لم أكن سوى مواطنة صالحة أحب بلدي وأتمنى له الأفضل، ابنة محبة وطالبة مجتهدة وعاملة جادة لم أكن لأحتقر أو أكره أو أحسد أي أحد فكيف الحال بوطني، ولا أعلم لي ذنبًا غير أني كل يوم أتحسر على كل محزون ومظلوم من مجتمعي وأحاول مساعدتهم تطوعا إما بوقتي أو جهدي فكيف تصبح هذه جريرتي؟ وأنا التي كنت أوصلهم مباشرة بالجهات المختصة من محامين وجمعيات حقوق انسان حكومية فكيف تؤخذ هذه ضدي!
كيف يبلغ الفساد بأناس أن يستغلوني لأجل الحصول على ترقيات ومليء جيوبهم بالمال على حسابي، أن ينسفوا عمري وحاضري ومستقبلي لغايات عبثية لا تكون إلا افسادا في الأرض وتشويهًا لصورة الوطن وتقديمها كدولة قمعية دون أدنى تفكير وحساب في ما يفعلون، لمصلحة من يحدث كل ما يحدث؟ 
لكن لا بأس، خذوا عمري وحياتي وصحتي وكل ما أملك إن كان في هذا مصلحة لبلدي ورفعة له، خذوا حاضري ومستقبلي وكل ما أحب إن كان هذا يرضيكم وفيه صالح لشعبنا، لكن لا تظلموني وتسلبوني حقي بالحياة والحرية والكرامة وكل ما حلمت به وطمحت اليه لأكون مجرد تضحية لغاية ما تصب في صالح أحدهم. 
ويا الهي إن كان ما يحدث يرضيك فلك العقبى حتى ترضى، وإن ما كان يحدث لا يرضيك، فأرزق شعبنا البصيرة حتى يعلموا أن أختهم بالوطن مظلومة وأنها لا تستحق سوى حريتها وحفظ كرامتها وحضن عائلتها الذي سلبت منه".


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