Raif Badawi: Wife of jailed blogger pleads Saudi royals for ‘amnesty’ allowing him to rejoin family in Canada

The wife of the jailed blogger Raif Badawi has called on Saudi Arabia’s powerful royal family to grant him an “amnesty”, allowing him to leave the country and rejoin his young family in Canada.

In an emotional appeal published by The Independent exactly a year after her husband was sentenced to a decade in prison and 1,000 lashes by Jeddah’s Criminal Court, Ensaf Haidar said he had been locked up merely because he was “a man of thought who conveyed that thought in writing”.

Writing in her native Arabic, she accused Saudi Arabia of treating her husband “like a criminal deserving of punishment, floggings and imprisonment” simply because he had spoken his mind through his liberal blog and wanted his country to respect people’s differences.