London, Asharq Al-Awsat- Britain’s highest court ruled on Wednesday that three Britons and a Canadian who were allegedly tortured while imprisoned in Saudi Arabia cannot sue Saudi officials.
The House of Lords ruled that William Sampson, who holds dual Canadian-British citizenship, along with Britons Ron Jones, Sandy Mitchell and Les Walker, do not have the right to sue their alleged torturers because foreign government officials are immune from prosecution in Britain .
The decision was welcomes by the Saudi embassy in London. “This important judgment serves the interests of the international community and it respects and protects the right of every legitimate sovereign state to govern within its own borders, free from civil suit in the domestic courts of another state. Today’s decision is in accordance with accepted principles of international law and is consistent with the position taken by the Kingdom since these claims were first made”, it said in statement to the press.
Following the announcement of the favourable judgment by the House of Lords, HRH Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al-Saud, the Kingdom’s Ambassador to the UK and Ireland, told the Saudi Press Agency, “The principles are well entrenched in UK Law and as such the judgment of the House of Lords does not come as a surprise in a country known for its fair legal system and respect for the rule of law.” He went on to thank the legal team who effectively represented the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in these cases.