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About the Campaign

On May 19th 2018, just a few weeks before the official lifting of the female driving ban in Saudi Arabia, the world was shocked to hear of the arrests of three of the most prominent women activists in Saudi Arabia, Aziza Al-Yousef, Eman Al-Nafjan, and Loujain Al-Hathloul.

These tireless, brave and tenacious campaigners for years fought against the ban on women driving. Following their arrest, the Saudi media ran a smear campaign against them, sharing pictures of these women with the word “traitor’’ stamped in red across their faces and now they are facing charges for "treason" that could lead to 20 years in jail.
Today, we ask you to participate in The Freedom Drive, a powerful campaign created by Manal Al-Sharif, a recognized women´s rights activist.

This campaign is a call for womens and mens around the world to stand up towards ending male guardianship and releasing immediately these activists from prison.
Please join us by signing this petition and sharing this campaign with the hashtag #IDrive4Freedom.

We will be sending an open petition to the King of Saudi Arabia and his Crown Prince.

“The Freedom Drive” itinerary is as follows:
• April 10 – 11: New York, NY
• April 12 – 13 : San Francisco, CA
• April 14 – 15: Los Angeles, CA
• April 16: Phoenix, AZ
• April 18: Houston, TX
• April 20-21: New Orleans, LA
• April 22: Birmingham, AL
• April 23: Charlotte, NC
• April 24: Richmond, VA
• April 25: Washington, DC

Photos

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Latest News & Media Kit



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“It terrifies me that my country has become known as a place from which men flee to die and women flee to live.”⁣

Saudi activist Manal al-Sharif helped push for women's right to drive in Saudi Arabia. Now she's protesting at the Saudi embassy in Washington D.C., fighting for the release of the women and men who remain under arrest because of their activism.⁣

Why this female Saudi activist has been losing hope for her country's future

Manal al-Sharif inspired Saudi Arabian women to defy their country's ban on female drivers by posting a video of herself behind the wheel. The act saw her jailed but was ultimately influential in the 2018 lifting of the ban. Now based in Australia, al-Sharif is raising awareness of female activists detained by Saudi authorities. Amna Nawaz talks to her about the state of Saudi women’s rights.

Alahednews:Saudi Female Activist Hits the Road for Human Rights

Manal al-Sharif is once again taking to the open road to shine a global spotlight on what she views as the injustice in Saudi Arabia.

In support of the detainees .. A protest in front of the Saudi embassy in Washington | tellerreport.com

Saudi activist Manal al-Sharif is holding a stand in front of the Saudi embassy in Washington on Friday to protest against the situation of female Saudi women currently detained in Riyadh prisons.

The Freedom Drive

Manal al-Sharif, a Saudi activist, is driving across America to raise awareness of her fellow female activists who are still detained for fighting for the right to drive. She started her trip in San Francisco and will cover some 3,000 miles to Washington.

Last night Hillary Clinton presents Manal al-Sharif with an award at Vital Voices

The Freedom Drive Campaign, starring Manal al-Sharif - the pioneering Saudi women's rights advocate, is a powerful campaign calling for women and men around the world to stand up towards ending male guardianship and releasing immediately the activists that has been arrested, tortured and imprisoned in Saudi Arabia or facing an unfair trail.

Saudi activist hits the road for human rights

Manal al-Sharif, the Saudi woman who dared to drive, is once again taking to the open road to shine a global spotlight on what she views as the injustice taking place in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi woman who dared to drive brings fight to Houston

For Manal al-Sharif, a spontaneous act of defiance in 2011 changed everything: She decided to go for a drive. “It was completely unplanned,” she said. “I don’t know what came over me. I think I was just tired of being harassed.” In many places around the world, driving around the block wouldn’t be so remarkable. But al-Sharif was living in Saudi Arabia, where women were forbidden from driving anywhere without a man’s permission.

Fight Continues For Women's Rights In Saudi Arabia

There are still women activists in jail for protesting for the right to drive in Saudi Arabia. John Iadarola and Manal al-Sharif break it down on The Damage Report.

Manal al-Sharif wants Americans to know of Saudi Arabia’s human rights abuses

The Saudi activist will drive across the US to bring awareness to Americans of the strict guardianship laws in her country – ‘I’m turning 40 today, and my son is still my guardian’

In the ‘kingdom of men,’ these Saudi women fight for the most basic right: self-determination

Two Saudi women described pushing back against their country’s oppressive regime. Then they asked the audience to get out their keys — and with a noise that filled the room, the crowd joined their struggle.

Saudi women’s rights activist fights on, but faces a long road home

Manal al-Sharif, who led the fight to get women legally behind the wheel in Saudi Arabia when they were banned from driving, is preparing for a road trip, this time across the United States.

We Finally Won the Right to Drive in Saudi Arabia. But the Kingdom's War on Women Is Only Getting Worse

Breaking news and analysis from TIME.com. Politics, world news, photos, video, tech reviews, health, science and entertainment news.

US citizen arrests set to deepen divide between Trump, GOP over Saudi Arabia — CNN Politics

Saudi Arabia arrested two more American citizens Friday in a direct snub to Congress, a move sure to create even more domestic political heat for President Donald Trump.

Opinion | A sham trial exposes Saudi Arabia’s continued disrespect for its citizens

The only crime committed by these female activists was caring enough for their country, despite all the risks and intimidation.

Loujain al Hathloul: Activist who demanded rights for Saudi women to face trial

Loujain al Hathloul, who campaigned for Saudi women to get the right to drive, has been detained since May last year.

Opinion | Pressure on Saudi Arabia might finally be starting to work. Keep it up.

Three female activists are released, but Riyadh’s system of repression remains.

Women activists and 5 men who have disappeared in the Saudi prison system

With Human Rights Watch releasing a statement on 21 March on behalf of Saudi women activists brought to court in Riyadh a week earlier, world attention remains focused, and rightly so.

The wheels have fallen off of a progressive Saudi Arabia.

Opinion | Why I can’t go back to Saudi Arabia to drive for the first time with my son

Daring To Drive: Manal al-Sharif's Next Fight For Saudi Women

As the face of the #Women2Drive campaign, Manal Al Sharif is hailed as a prominent champion for women's rights in Saudi Arabia and around the world. She's getting behind the wheel again, but this time for something bigger.

Activista por los derechos de las mujeres sauditas está siendo torturada en un “palacio del terror”, dice su hermano

Activista por los derechos de las mujeres sauditas está siendo torturada en un “palacio del terror”, dice su hermano

Saudi women's activists stand trial after a year in detention

Saudi's prosecution has not specified charges against activists, who stand trial after almost year of imprisonment.

Reform in Reverse in Saudi Arabia

The kingdom’s young prince takes a step backward on women’s rights, arresting activists who had pushed for women to be allowed to drive.

A sham trial exposes Saudi Arabia’s continued disrespect for its citizens

The only crime committed by these female activists was caring enough for their country, despite all the risks and intimidation.

Trial of Saudi Women Activists Postponed With No Verdict

Trial of Saudi Women Activists Postponed With No Verdict

Saudi women who campaigned for the right to drive tortured, Amnesty says

Detained activists in Saudi Arabia, including those who campaigned for the right for women to drive, are being sexually harassed and tortured in prison, Amnesty International says.

Over 50 human rights groups call for immediate release of Saudi rights defenders - IFEX

Not only are these women activists facing prosecution without due process, they've also subjected them to severe torture, including by sexual violence and electrocution.

Saudi Arabia's enduring guardianship system

Saudi women must obtain a male relative's approval to travel abroad, get married - or leave prison.

Saudi women activists face trial after almost a year in detention

Saudi Arabian women rights activists are on trial for the first time since being detained in a case that has intensified scrutiny of Riyadh's rights record.

Saudi Arabia tortured female right-to-drive activists, says Amnesty

Women’s accounts include being given electric shocks and flogged, hung from the ceiling, and subjected to sexual harassment

Saudi Arabia: Women’s Rights Activists Charged

Saudi Arabia’spublic prosecution agency announced on March 1, 2019 that the country’s leading women’s rights activists who have been detained following arrests that began in May 2018 would face charges and be put on trial, Human Rights Watch said today.

Leading Saudi women's rights activists go on trial

Three dozen countries, including all 28 E.U. members, called on Riyadh last week to release the activists.

The world has not forgotten the women detained and tortured in Saudi Arabia ǀ View

The European Parliament agreed a resolution condemning the detention and torture of women activists in Saudi Arabia. Now is the time for action. The world should not turn its back on wrongfully imprisoned women like Eman Al Nafjan.

Trial of prominent Saudi woman activist to start this week: family

The trial of Loujain al-Hathloul, one of nearly a dozen prominent Saudi Arabian


URGENT ACTION SAUDI ARABIA IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF WOMEN’S RIGHTS DEFENDERS

In May of 2018, Saudi authorities arrested Loujain al-Hathloul, Eman al-Nafjan, and Aziza al-Yousef along with other prominent women’s rights activists just weeks before the country lifted the ban on women driving. These women have been arbitrarily detained in undisclosed locations for nearly one year with little or no contact with their families. The women who have been able to speak with family members have reported that in jail they have been beaten, tortured, electrocuted, and sexually harassed. These arbitrary detentions are part of a sweeping crackdown on anyone who is even perceived as a critic of the Saudi regime. The women’s rights activists have been publicly accused of working to “undermine the security” of Saudi Arabia and domestic news outlets have published the names and photos of the women stamped with the word “traitor” in a state-sponsored smear campaign. Last month, trials began for at least 11 women on charges including activism against the state’s male guardianship law, making contact with foreign journalists, and — in one case — applying for a job at the United Nations.


The goals of the Freedom Drive are to raise awareness about these activists who have been detained and put on trial for advocating peacefully for basic human rights and to abolish Saudi’s male guardianship system that enslaves Saudi women. The Freedom Drive campaign will continue pushing leaders in the U.S. and abroad to enforce the Global Magnitsky Act against Saudi officials who are complicit in violating human rights.

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