A 45-years-old Emirati man, identified as H.A.A.T, has been given a 10 years jail sentence for his blogging and social media activities.
He has been prosecuted at the State Security Court due to the political nature of the content he produced. Although he attempted to appeal, the Abu Dhabi Court Of Appeals has rejected his case and confirmed the sentencing.
H.A.A.T ran a blog where he produced and published articles and a Facebook and Youtube social media accounts where he produced and published videos.
His content was addressed to the UAE. He also addressed Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Morocco and Turkey. Some of the content was also offensive to Islam.
Here’s the list of violations found in his content:
- Abuse of UAE security services
- Damaging national unity
- Damaging the UAE’s image abroad
- Disturbing public order
- Promoting racism and sectarianism
- Inciting strife and hatred
- Offending the people of the house of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his companions
It is usually shocking, in the UAE, when an Emirati citizen express himself in this way, as many expats are very patriotic towards the UAE (a country they’re not citizens off) and would never expect that a citizen of the land feels this way about his country.
H.A.A.T was arrested and all his devices confiscated then forced to shut down his blog and social media accounts.
The UAE is under immense pressure from human rights organizations for limiting the freedom of expression (as a human right) of its citizens.