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Report: Saudi poet who criticized security to be imprisoned

Posted April 13

— A counterterrorism court in Saudi Arabia has sentenced a poet to two months imprisonment for poetry deemed insulting to security officials.

The state-linked Saudi Okaz reported Thursday that the poet, whose name was not published, had shared the poem on Twitter and YouTube.

The news website says the Specialized Criminal Court in the capital, Riyadh, found the Saudi poet guilty of producing and publishing material that was disrespectful to security officials and that could harm public order. The court also ordered the poet's social media accounts closed.

Dozens of Saudi rights activists are behind bars or convicted under a sweeping counterterrorism law that equates demands for reform or criticism of the government as harmful to stability. Criticism of the monarchy, however, remains prevalent on Twitter and other social media sites.

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