Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Saudi internet campaign condemns calls for demonstrations | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat – Saudi activists on the social networking website Facebook, which has contributed to the removal of Arab regimes and leaders over the past weeks and months, have condemned the calls for protests in the country as breaching national security, with such calls receiving comprehensive popular rejection in Saudi Arabia.

In response to some parties issuing calls for demonstrations to take place in some regions of Saudi Arabia, Saudi internet activists have come out to clearly and explicitly confront this, describing these calls as being “unreasonable.”

In this regard, a Saudi Arabian Facebook group has been set up under the title “Ila Al Watan” [Anything but the homeland] to countermand these calls for demonstration, saying that this will only lead to unrest and chaos. Members of this group stressed that such protests and demonstrations contravene Islamic Sharia law, from which the ruling regime obtains its legitimacy and which Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic relations, both internal and external, are based upon.

Some members of this Facebook group have said that they believe that these calls for demonstrations are being made by external parties who are seeking to cause security problems in Saudi Arabia.

The founder of the “Ila Al Watan” Facebook group, Saudi youth Mufid al-Nuwaisar, said that he set up this group in order to clarify certain issues and ideas that the enemies of Saudi Arabia are utilizing in order to attempt to sow discord and create confusion.

Al-Nuwaisar told Asharq Al-Awsat “let us look at what is happening around us with regards to those who have lost security in their homelands, their men have been forced to stand watch all night in order to protect themselves.” He added “there are some people who want to ambush the Arab and Islamic world, and want to ambush us in this safe and secure country [Saudi Arabia], but by God we will not allow them to harm our security, and we will stand and block any such attempts.”

In the description of his Facebook group, al-Nuwaisar wrote “we call on the intellectuals to think [and see] that warding off evil takes precedence over gaining interests.”

He also told Asharq Al-Awsat that people from all across Saudi Arabia of different backgrounds had joined this group, saying “these brothers and friends are like family, and our destiny and fate is one, and we are confident that they will stand with us should any crisis arise.” He added “these are our brothers and friends from all across the country, and we share the same bread, and we all enjoy security and safety, and when the terrorists attacked some infrastructure they did not abandon us but stood with us.”

However in light of the unrest seen in the early days of the Egyptian uprising, which was used by some groups as a pretext for looting and criminal activity, al-Nuwaisar warned against any security breaches occurring in Saudi Arabia, saying that “there are some who live amongst us who will become, God forbid, like hungry wolves that will devour us and rob our homes [should this happen].” He added “this does not exclude Saudi nationals who are saboteurs and anarchists and who want to incite chaos and discord [in the country]…we must not give them the opportunity to achieve their goals.”

He also stressed that “any problems should be resolved rationally and wisely, addressing those who are in charge, and not via any other means, such as in the manner desired by those who want to incite unrest.”