My former colleague Ebtihal Mubarak has a touching story in today’s Arab News about the continued imprisonment of Saudi blogger Fuad al-Farhan. Arrested on Dec. 10 of last year, Fuad has been held in a detention center in solitary confinement ever since, and has not been allowed any family visits except for one visit by his father-in-law in December.
According to his wife he called his elderly mother on Feb. 12 and spoke with her for less than ten minutes. His wife told Arab News that she hardly ever leaves her house in the hope that Fuad will call. On the day that he spoke to his mother, his wife said that she had gone out to buy supplies for her children and that is why she missed his call.
The part of the story that I found particularly touching said: “Last Tuesday she remained all day at home beside the phone. ‘I thought to myself maybe phone calls are only allowed on that particular day. But he didn’t call last week,’ she said.”
The uncertainty of not knowing if Fuad will be charged with anything, or when he will be released, must be especially nerve-wracking for his family. At least when a person is charged, convicted and sentenced to jail time, a judicial course has been taken and there is finality to the doubts of not knowing when it will all end. I just hope that Fuad will be released soon and not charged with anything. He deserves to be free and reunited with his loved ones.