Jalal Mohamed al-Jamal, Al-Awamia
Imprisoned:May 18, 2014

The Saudi Specialized Criminal Court on May 6, 2014, sentenced al-Jamal to five years' imprisonment and a fine of 50,000 riyals (US$13,330), according to local news reports. Al-Jamal, a manager of the Al-Awamia news website, was convicted on charges of establishing a website that called for protests, disobeying the king, and disrupting public security.

Twelve days later, on May 18, al-Jamal was taken into custody to begin serving his sentence, news reports said. His case was still under appeal in late 2014. He began a hunger strike to protest his prison conditions, according to local news reports.

The director of the European Saudi Organization for Human Rights, Ali Adubisi, told CPJ that al-Jamal was held at the General Intelligence Prison in the city of Dammam.

Al-Jamal was arrested in February 2012 and held without charge. In March 2013, he was released without explanation, according to news reports.

Al-Awamia covers pro-reform demonstrations in the predominantly Shia Eastern Province and was known for its criticism of the government, according to news reports. Al-Awamia was temporarily shut down after his arrest, the reports said. The kingdom has obstructed coverage of Eastern Province protests, which call for political reforms and greater rights for the country's Shia minority, CPJ research shows.

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