British help for oppression in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain

Dear Kitty. Some blog

Demonstrators protesting against a G8 summit being held in Northern Ireland, walk to BAE systems headquarters in central London, 12 June 2013. Photo: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

From Index on Censorship:

Revealed: The British exports that crush free expression

9 May 2014

The Arab Spring has not stopped Britain from helping crush free expression and freedom of assembly by selling crowd control gear to authoritarian states including Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

Analysis of newly-published data on export licences approved by the UK government have revealed ministers backed over £4 million of tear gas, crowd control ammunition and CS hand grenade sales over the last two years to Saudi Arabiaone of the most repressive states in the world.

The British government also allowed crowd control ammunition to be sold to Malaysia and Oman, as well as tear gas to Hong Kong and Thailand.

It gave the green light to anti-riot and ballistic shields to four authoritarian regimes listed by the Economist Democratic Index: the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Azerbaijan

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#FreeThe4 Domestic Violence. Silence hides abuse

Domestic violence 2 Silence-Hides-Violence

Domestic violence and abuse: new definition

The cross-government definition of domestic violence and abuse is:

any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. The abuse can encompass, but is not limited to:

  • psychological

  • physical

  • sexual

  • financial

  • emotional

domestic violence 1

Controlling behaviour

Controlling behaviour is a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.

Coercive behaviour

Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim.

This is not a legal definition.

Definition of domestic violence and abuse: guide for local areas

To help local areas consider the consider how the extension to the definition of domestic violence and abuse may impact on their services, the Home Office, in partnership with Against Violence and Abuse (AVA) has produced a guide for local areas.

A guide for Wales is currently being developed and will be published in due course.

Forced marriage

Read information and practice guidelines for professionals protecting, advising and supporting victims of forced marriage.

Three steps to escaping domestic violence

Read the leaflet the Home Office developed with Southall Black Sisters at women in black and minority ethnic communities: Three steps to escaping domestic violence.

Domestic abuse and young people

The changes to the definition of domestic raise awareness that young people in the 16 to 17 age group can also be victims of domestic violence and abuse.

By including this age group the government hopes to encourage young people to come forward and get the support they need, through a helpline or specialist service.

Young people’s panel

A young people’s panel will be set up by the NSPCC. The panel will consist of up to 5 members between the age of 16 and 22, who will work with the government on domestic violence policy and wider work to tackle violence against women and girls.

Domestic violence disclosure scheme

From 8 March 2014, the domestic violence disclosure scheme will be implemented across England and Wales. This follows the successful conclusion of a 1 year pilot in the Greater Manchester, Nottinghamshire, West Mercia and Wiltshire police force areas.

Right to ask

Under the scheme an individual can ask police to check whether a new or existing partner has a violent past. This is the ‘right to ask’. If records show that an individual may be at risk of domestic violence from a partner, the police will consider disclosing the information. A disclosure can be made if it is legal, proportionate and necessary to do so.

Right to know

This enables an agency to apply for a discloure if the agency believes that an indivdual is at risk of domestic violence from their partner. Again, the police can release information if it is lawful, necessary and proportionate to do so.

The pilot assessment report and the impact assessment on the disclosure scheme are available. You can also read the domestic violence disclosure scheme guidance.

Domestic violence protection notices and orders

Domestic violence protection orders (DVPOs) are being implemented across England and Wales from 8 March 2014. This follows the successful conclusion of a 1 year pilot in the West Mercia, Wiltshire and Greater Manchester police force areas.

Domestic violence protection orders are a new power that fills a gap in providing protection to victims by enabling the police and magistrates to put in place protection in the immediate aftermath of a domestic violence incident.

With DVPOs, a perpetrator can be banned with immediate effect from returning to a residence and from having contact with the victim for up to 28 days, allowing the victim time to consider their options and get the support they need.

Before the scheme, there was a gap in protection, because police couldn’t charge the perpetrator for lack of evidence and so provide protection to a victim through bail conditions, and because the process of granting injunctions took time.

Read full

The DVPO evaluation report and the DVPO impact assessment are available. You can also read the DVPO interim guidelines.

Real life story of Munira

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#FreeThe4 @AlanoudDAlfayez My mother said I lacked empathy

Image courtesy of Teaching Our Kids #Empathy by Bruce Sallan


I was about 15 at the time. Maybe she was spot on right and it’s taken a lifetime plus an event I could never have imagined to unleash the hidden wellspring of human compassion.

Not only that, it was around my birthday, another mother @AlanoudDAlfayez touched my heart and as they say, rest is history.

I can genuinely & confidently state that I am able to express empathy through #FreeThe4 community.

Let me share a tiny snippet about my mother and my childhood memories.

Can’t remember my age, but I’m sure all of us have done it. When you wake up at some ridiculous hour of dawn and insist on clambering all over your mother.

One such image is distinct in my memory because I did it lots of times. I’d wake up only to find my mother in her study. She was a Homeopathic Doctor and if she couldn’t find a solution she’d wake up half way through the night to pore over her books.

She’d put me on her knee & give me this massive tome, Materia Medica & I’d flick through looking at pictures of various diseases, etc & looking back she must have been incredibly patient to put up with my stupid questions. And I had lots of questions, I needed to know the origin of everything. I wanted to know how parts of the body interact with each other. What if each hand had a personality of its own?

I blame catechism, they said, angel sat on your right shoulder & the devil on your left. Right = good & Left = bad. They also said if you bit the Eucharist, blood would flow out of my mouth, the ground would open up in front of me & I’d go to hell. Well, I’m still waiting! Maybe the phone lines to hell were damaged or something. I bit & am still here. Hey! but it could still happen you know. There you are eyes half open, brushing your teeth and then blood, yes real blood pouring out of your mouth. And there in the mirror you see that nasty bully from school laughing his head off. Anyway, I tell you Catholicism is scary shit.

Here are some questions she never really answered; Is there a priority status within the human body? I mean, which part is really in charge? If lizards can regrow a tail why can’t we? & so on & so on!

She introduced me to Holistics & I didn’t comprehend it at the time. She said she sees each patient as a corporation (a company having lots of employees & job titles) where the various departments refuse to cooperate, thereby causing a breakdown in communication. Her job she said was to get all of them eager & happy to help each other.

She taught me, that if you get a 1,000 people together for a task and they worked 9-5, after 1 month all they will produce is a lot of paper reports and nothing will be constructed.

In other words, without clear leadership most people just exist. They don’t challenge, they don’t put their heads above the parapet, they do very little. Just enough to exist.

The collective (each organism with the human body) conscience of each person only favours existence above all else. Our default setting is to find the easiest route to exist.

Humans are seriously adaptable & survival is our default setting. We do anything, say anything, believe anything JUST to exist!

Before I ramble on in a million directions let me bring this to a close with a question; Why do you support @AlanoudDAlfayez?

My answer is crystal clear.

The day @AlanoudDAlfayez stepped out went public is the day she refused to just exist. That is my empathy button.
What’s yours?

#FreeThe4 Dedicated Mothers Day to Alanoud D Alfayez @AnaoudDAlfayez

Saudi Embassy


Mother cries
Dies inside
4 daughters no longer by her side

Princesses in captivity.
Invisible to all in totality.
Our perceived image not the same as your reality.

Pasted from <;


@AlanoudDAlfayez courage found
Listens to heart’s sound
Fearless mother duty bound
Imagine mother’s joy seeing child grow
Imagine mother’s loss & sorrow NOT seeing her children grow
#FreeThe4 @Jawaher1776 @AlanoudDAlfayez

Pasted from <;


Twitter Storm user guide

Media Contortions

Twitter Storm User Guide #FreeThe4

Please be Polite, Positive and Proactive

• Use ONLY 1 # (multiple #’s do not help with trending). In fact just #FreeThe4 shows your input
• Quote Tweet or Copy & Paste (steal) other people tweets.
• Do NOT RT (Retweets do not count towards trending) as they are not original
• Favourites don’t count either
• Keep tweets short, making it easier for other people to QT (QuoteTweet) or copy
• Never RT someone you don’t follow. Doing this more than once will result in Twitmo (jailed)
• Easy tweet is to attach a picture or link + #FreeThe4 & no other words are needed
• Tweets in languages is acceptable as long as #FreeThe4 is included

• Never feed a TROLL
• Fire needs Oxygen to burn. Deny the troll oxygen
• You’re involvement & time on a storm is precious
• Avoid arguments/discussions
• If all else fails, Block the troll (you can always unblock later)

Good luck dear friends. Please remember Twitter Storm alerts the world to that particular #.

#FreeThe4 is in solidarity with @AlanoudDAlfayez at the gates of the Saudi Embassy in London and her four daughters.


#FreeThe4 Media contortions

#FreeThe4 is the sad real life episode of @AlanoudDAlFayez in London while her four daughters Sahar 42,  Maha 41, Hala 39 and Jawaher 38 – daughters of the ailing King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia have been denied their freedom.

Here written out are the questions and phrases used by Jeremy Paxman BBC Two – Newsnight and no doubt similar words most likely used by all journos.

At times it feels like the “Princesses in captivity” narrative is being undermined

What do you know of the conditions your daughters are kept in?
They are not able to go out shopping?
So They (Sahar & Jawaher) can go shopping?
So they aren’t really imprisoned are they?
Do you know why they are being treated like this?
Have they tried to leave the country?
I suppose they’d ask for their passport
He refused (This is the King)
But is it true that they are actually imprisoned as it were or held in a Palace?
But you’ll understand that by comparison with being imprisoned it doesn’t sound very grim
You make it sound like they are being held hostage
And if you return they’ll be freed?
What’s the physical condition of your daughters? Healthwise
And their mental condition?


Monday 10 March 2014 Saudi Arabia

‘They are hanging to life’ – Saudi king’s ex-wife speaks out [Link]

Saudi King filmed joking with ex-teacher: “Do you remember when you smacked me?”

Prisoners at the palace: Saudi princesses plead for help as they claim they are being held by the king against their will


I was wife No2 in the King’s Harem


Princesses held captive 13 years by Saudi King: Princess Sahar’s plea for help


The Saudi royal family

Palace coop

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