We, poets and writers from around the world, are appalled that the Saudi Arabian authorities have sentenced Palestinian poet Ashraf Fayadh to death for apostasy.
It is not a crime to hold an idea, however unpopular, nor is it a crime to express opinion peacefully. Every individual has the freedom to believe or not believe. Freedom of conscience is an essential human right.
The death sentence against Fayadh is the latest example of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s lack of tolerance for freedom of expression and ongoing persecution of free thinkers.
We, Fayadh’s fellow poets and writers, urge the Saudi authorities to desist from punishing individuals for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression and call for his immediate and unconditional release.