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Raif Badawi on hunger strike, says wife of Saudi blogger

Imprisoned Saudi blogger Raif Badawi's wife claims her husband has begun a hunger strike, and she's once again calling on the King of Saudi Arabia to issue him a pardon.

Ensaf Haidar calls for husband's pardon, says he's been transferred to 'isolated' prison

Raif Badawi could face 1,000 lashes if his sentence is carried out. The punishment is divided into four sessions, with hospital visits in between to treat the wounds. (Amnesty International Canada)


Ensaf Haidar, the wife of imprisoned Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, claims her husband has begun a hunger strike, and she's once again calling on the King of Saudi Arabia to issue him a pardon.

Haidar tweeted Thursday that her husband Raif Badawi has been on a hunger strike since Tuesday, after being transferred to a new and "isolated" prison a week ago.

In 2014, Badawi was found guilty of insulting Islamic values, "promoting liberal thought" and "going beyond the realm of obedience" by suggesting on his website that the Saudi kingdom should become more democratic.

He was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes. He also faces a hefty fine.

Ensaf Haidar is the wife of Raif Badawi. She lives in Sherbrooke, Que., with their three children and has been lobbying the Canadian government to assist in freeing Badawi after he was jailed in Saudi Arabia. (CBC)

The flogging was suspended after Badawi received an initial 50 lashes last January. Badawi's detention and sentence have stirred up worldwide condemnation.

Badawi is not a Canadian citizen, but his wife and three children were granted political asylum in 2013.

They live in Sherbrooke, Que.

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