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Startseite Urgent Actions 2019 12 Palestinian father and son arbitrarily detained 83-year-old detainee needs urgent medical care
FI 172/19-2
Saudi Arabia
Aktiv seit 15. Februar 2021 | Noch 37 Tage Laufzeit

83-year-old detainee needs urgent medical care

AI-Index: MDE 23/3692/2021

The health of 83-year-old Palestinian national detained in Saudi Arabia, Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari, has been deteriorating due to the lack of access to adequate health care, including care for his bladder catheterization, compounding bad detention conditions. Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari had undergone surgery and was being treated for prostate cancer when the Saudi authorities arbitrarily arrested him and his son, Dr. Hani al-Khudari on 4 April 2019. One year later, Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari and Dr. Hani al-Khudari were brought before the Specialized Criminal Court (SCC) in a mass trial marred by serious due process violations, including being denied adequate access to a lawyer throughout this period.


Two weeks prior to his arrest on 4 April 2020, Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari underwent surgery and was being treated, including through radiotherapy, for his cancer. According to the medical reports shared by his family, when discharged from the hospital his treatment required that he regularly take eight different medications. Although he has been allowed access to medical care in jail, the family is concerned that Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari is not getting adequate medical treatment. The arrests of the two Palestinian nationals is part of a wider crackdown by the Saudi Arabian authorities on Palestinian, Jordanian and Saudi Arabian nationals residing in Saudi Arabia with a perceived link to Hamas de facto authorities.

Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari and Dr. Hani al-Khudari were arbitrarily arrested on 4 April 2019 and remained in detention without charges until 8 March 2020. Both men have been subjected to gross human rights violations including enforced disappearance, arbitrary arrest and detention, being held incommunicado and solitary confinement. Furthermore, both men were interrogated behind closed doors without the presence or participation of their lawyers. Their treatment and conditions of detention placed a great deal of stress and psychological pressure on both men, especially Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari. The denial of access to adequate medical care has caused further deterioration of the health of Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari. Such conduct violates the prohibition of torture and other ill-treatment.

Amnesty International has documented the Saudi Arabian authorities’ use of the SCC since 2011 to systematically silence dissent, concluding that SCC judges have presided over grossly unfair trials, handing down prison sentences of up to 30 years and numerous death sentences under vague provisions of the counter-terror and anti-cybercrime laws.


Take action

  • Write an appeal in your own words or use the model letter below.
  • Please take action before 12 April 2021.
  • Preferred language: Arabic/English. You can also write in your own language.
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Model letter

Your Majesty,

Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari, an 83-old Palestinian national, is in need of urgent medical care as his health is steadily deteriorating in the prison of Abha, Saudi Arabia. When he was arrested on 4 April 2019, he was undergoing cancer treatment, and concerns for his health have increased with the COVID-19 pandemic and risks for an older person with underlying medical conditions. Earlier this year, Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari lost partial function of his right hand and lost some of his teeth. He is currently dependent on his son, detained with him, to feed him and help him around the prison.

In November 2020, Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari and his son, Dr. Hani al-Khudari, were transferred to Abha prison, which lacks medical specialists and the standard care required by Dr. al-Khudari. Although he has been allowed access to medical care in jail, he was denied consultation with specialist doctors to conduct check-ups and assess tumour size. The last time he had access to a specialist was three months ago in Dhahban prison.

On 8 March 2020, both men were charged before the SCC with «joining a terrorist entity» - understood to be Hamas de facto authorities - as part a mass trial of 68 individuals. Dr. al-Khudari was additionally charged with holding several leadership positions within the entity. Their trial has been marred by numerous and serious violations of their due process rights, including enforced disappearance, arbitrary arrest and detention, being held incommunicado and solitary confinement.

We call on your Majesty to ensure these unfounded charges against Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari and Dr. Hani al-Khudari are dropped and that they are released. In the interim, ensure that both men are given regular access to their lawyer. Pending the dropping of charges, and in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari’s health concerns, we call on your Majesty to urgently transfer Dr. Mohammed al-Khudari to a hospital where he is able to receive the urgent specialized medical care he needs.

Yours sincerely,

Appeals to

King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud
The Custodian of the two Holy Mosques
Office of His Majesty the King
Royal Court, Riyadh
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Fax: +966 11 403 3125 (please keep trying)
Twitter: @KingSalman



Copies to

Ambassade du Royaume d'Arabie Saoudite
Kirchenfeldstrasse 64
3005 Berne

Fax: 031 351 45 81
E-mail: ;
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