Saudi Arabia Threatens To Hand 5 Year Jail Term To Govt Critics

Saudi Arabia announced that anyone poking fun online at the government would face five years in jail.

The desert kingdom’s public prosecutor launched a crackdown on mockery and satire which he said ‘disrupts public order’.

A popular cartoon series, Masameer, which makes fun of the Saudi authorities over issues such as women’s rights, drug use, corruption and religious tensions, has already amassed 600 million views over 100 episodes on YouTube.

The announcement came a day after prosecutors at the trial of Salman al-Awda said they were seeking the death penalty for the country’s most famous cleric who has more than 14 million Twitter followers.

Al-Awda, 62, was arrested last September after defying a request from the authorities to support the Saudi-led blockade of Qatar.

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