Al-Watan On Line

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Attacks on the Press   |   Egypt, Kuwait, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, UAE, Yemen

Treating the Internet as the enemy in the Middle East

Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood and ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi shout slogans against the military and government during a protest in Cairo on November 28, 2014. (Reuters/Mohamed Abd El Ghany)

The snow and freezing temperatures that struck Saudi Arabia unexpectedly in December 2013 were newsworthy in a desert kingdom better known for its extreme heat. But the fact that the ensuing power outages at a regional prison left prisoners without power or heat for nearly a week was apparently off-limits to reporters.

Blog   |   Saudi Arabia

Saudi censorship blurs lines between journalism, activism

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah has decreed several laws that censor the press. (Reuters/Kevin Lamarque)

Since the surprise Arab uprisings of 2011, the Saudi government has worked assiduously to ensure it has all the tools of censorship it needs to control dissent. These tools--a combination of special courts, laws, and regulatory authorities--are starting to fire on all cylinders. The result has been a string of arrests and prosecutions in recent months of independent and dissident voices.

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