Saleh Muhammad Saleh Al-Dhafiri, born in 1960, holds a BA in Sharia in 1999 from Imam Muhammad bin Saud Islamic University, and he is one of the founders of the Reform Call and a member of the Board of Trustees and Director General of the Ras Al Khaimah Foundation for the Noble Qur’an. He worked as a high school teacher for 3 years and a headmaster in High school for 13 years.
His apprehension and trial
In 2012, the UAE security forces, wearing plainclothes, abducted Al-Dhafiri without an arrest warrant. He was referred to the Public Prosecution office after 48 hours on charges of promoting, by speaking and writing, ideas that would stir up discord and harm national unity and social peace. It is worth mentioning that he mentioned such ideas in a TV program about some unfair practices of the UAE authorities, in addition to his demand for reform.
In March 2012, Al-Dhafiri was bailed out while his trial continued. However, on April 29, 2012, he was arrested and subjected to enforced disappearance. In March, 2013, he appeared before courtuntil the start of the trial sessions in March 2013.
On July 2, 2013, the Federal Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi sentenced Al-Dhafiri to 10 years imprisonment with additional 3 years of probation on charges related to being affiliated to a secret illegal organization. He was brought before court as a member of the “UAE 94” group.
It has been reported that in November 2015, Al-Dhairi was subjected to various forms of torture in Al-Razeen prison. They put loudspeakers with a very loud music, causing him unconsciousness. Despite the alarm and cameras in every cell, there was no reaction from the guard. In the end, doctors discovered that he suffered high blood pressure and severe ear infections due to the loudspeakers. After that, he was placed in solitary confinement and prevented from seeing anybody.
His trial lacked all standards of fair trial, as there was not any material evidence against him. The authorities extracted confessions from prisoners of conscience, including Al-Dhafiri, under torture. He was placed in solitary confinement and prevented from legal representation. Also, his statements that he was subjected to enforced disappearance were ignored.
On January 21, 2014, he appeared before court in his second trial, named "Egyptian cell" case. The State Security Court in the Federal Supreme Court sentenced him to 4 years imprisonment, on charges of broadcasting misappropriated data among individuals from the Egyptian cell, and providing members of the Emirati secret organization with a copy, without Permission from the competent authorities. The second charge, which is a 3-month sentence, is his knowledge of the existence of the Egyptian Brotherhood cell in the country, without reporting it to the authorities.
A wholesale of violations against Al-Dhafiri in Al-Razeen prison have been documented. He was also placed in solitary confinement for weeks without seeing the sunlight or practicing any activities or religious rituals.