Sunday, December 30, 2007

About CDHR

About CDHR

Mission Declaration:

The Center for Democracy and Human Rights in Saudi Arabia (CDHR) is a (501)(c)3 non-profit organization established to promote timely and irreversible transformation of the existing Saudi autocratic institutions to a system whereby all Saudi citizens are empowered to chart a peaceful, prosperous, tolerant and safe future for themselves and for their religiously and economically influential country.

Implication for the International Community

Due to its centrality to Islam and position as the largest exporter of petroleum, Saudi Arabia plays major roles in the lives of Muslims and non-Muslims worldwide. Stabilizing Saudi Arabia under pluralistic institutions will ensure peace and prosperity for the Saudi people, the Greater Middle East and the international community.

What We Do

CDHR gathers information from a wide range of sources about current events in Saudi Arabia and analyzes and interprets their impact on Saudi society, the Greater Middle East and the international community. These unique findings are disseminated to policy makers, the public, media, educational institutions and a variety of nongovernmental organizations. The distribution of CDHR’s information is widely dispersed via our newsletter, website, Blog, Facebook and Twitter accounts. In addition, CDHR’s staff organize educational conferences, Congressional briefings and participate in a multitude of public and official events. CDHR promotes: freedom of worship and expression, transparency, accountability, empowerment of women, protection of migrant workers, establishment of and adherence to non-sectarian laws and compliance with all international declarations on human rights. CDHR rallies support for Saudi democratic reformers, highlights their initiatives and exposes the Saudi government’s heavy-handed responses to them.

CDHR Promotes:

Political Reform: Transformation of the Saudi political structure from its current autocratic one-family-rule to a participatory political structure where all citizens’ and expatriates’ civil liberties and full rights are protected under the rule of codified non-sectarian laws. Find Out More!

Religious Freedom: Freedom of worship, religious thoughts, practices and choices. Find Out More!

Women’s Rights: Equal rights for all Saudi women, the eradication of child and forced marriages, honor killings, stoning, genital mutilation, pleasure (mit’ah) marriage, the four wives system and the removal of gender segregation rules throughout society. Find Out More!

Minority Rights: Full and equal rights for Muslim and non-Muslim religious minorities under the rule of law. Find Out More!

Economic Reform: Privatization of government owned industries, public utilities and independent economic institutions. Find Out More!

US Legislation: Learn about current U.S. legislation affecting human rights and democracy in Saudi Arabia, and encourage your Congressional Representatives to support these important initiatives. Find Out More!

A Non-sectarian Judicial System: An independent court system staffed by highly qualified jurists who interpret and apply publicly approved non-sectarian laws where the rights and dignity of all citizens, regardless of status, and expatriates are equally protected under the rule of law.

Transparency and Accountability: Creation of an independent national treasury where all national revenues and disbursements are accounted for and open to public scrutiny.

Reformed Education and Religious Institutions: The management of all educational and religious institutions should be turned over to non-governmental bodies. As required by the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights Dec. 10, 1948, courses about women, human rights and other religions must be part of all educational levels in Saudi Arabia.

Freedom of the Press and Flow of Uncensored Information: Abolition of censorship of all forms of expressions and information in and outside of the country.

CDHR’s Activities:

1) Provides thought provoking and accurate information and analysis of Saudi events and policies via its widely read website and 5,000 strong newsletter recipients worldwide. CDHR’s director analyzes current Saudi news and policies for the benefit of the readers who would otherwise take the highly censored Saudi news for face value.

2) Operates a Blog, Twitter and Facebook accounts to spread information and engage readers in open discussions about issues that affect them, but which they cannot initiate from or discuss openly in Saudi Arabia.

3) Organizes in-depth public and official conferences and round table discussions in which qualified speakers present current different prospective and analysis about Saudi policies, US-Saudi relations and the Saudi role in the financing and spread of its austere brand of Islam, Wahhabism.

4) Monitors and conducts research on human rights, women’s and minority rights, rights of expatriates, religious tolerance and freedom of worship and expression.

5) Networks with other groups, think tanks and Congressional staffers in Washington, to provide them with current information about Saudi Arabia as it relates to the US and its interests.

6) Networks with pro-democracy and human rights groups in the US, Europe and individuals in the Arab and Muslim communities.

7) Provides presentations at conferences and other events, utilizing the knowledge of the Executive Director as a native of Saudi Arabia and an expert intimately familiar with its history, composition, and peoples.

Subscribe to our newsletters!

CDHR sends out regular newsletters twice a month to our readers with analysis of events in Saudi Arabia, upcoming CDHR events, and reports on the progress of our ongoing campaigns. Subscribe Now!

Please donate online or by mail

The Center for Democracy & Human Rights in Saudi Arabia is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization registered in Washington, DC. Your donation is tax deductible and will help CDHR continue its democratic, nonviolent activities. Donate easily online to CDHR using PayPal or send a donation by mail to:

The Center for Democracy & Human Rights in Saudi Arabia
1050 17th Street NW
Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20036 USA

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Recommended Readings

In the News

  1. PBS Frontline: Saudi Time Bomb?
  2. Interview with Prince Talal from Financial Times
  3. Is the Military Bulwark Against Islamism Collapsing? from Middle East Forum
  4. Losing My Jihadism from The Washington Post
  5. The Jihadi Who Kept Asking Why from The New York Times

News Sources

  1. Arab News


  1. 9/11 Five Years Later: Successes and Challenges from the US National Security Council

  1. The 9/11 Report from the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States
  2. Human Rights Watch Report from 2001 on Saudi Arabia
  3. Saudi Arabia Country Reports on Human Rights Practices - 2004 from the US State Department.
  4. International Religious Freedom Report 2005: Saudi Arabia from the US State Department
  5. Report on Women’s Rights in the Middle East and North Africa, Saudi Arabia section from Freedom House

  1. International Religious Freedom Report 2008 on Saudi Arabia from US State Department
  2. Perpetual Minors: Human Rights Abuses Stemming from Male Guardianship and Sex Segregation in Saudi Arabia from Human Rights Watch, April 2008
  3. Universal Periodic Review of Saudi Arabia from Human Rights Watch

  1. Human Rights and Saudi Arabia’s Counterterrorism Response: Religious Counseling, Indefinite Detention, and Flawed Trials from Human Rights Watch, August 2009


  1. America’s Kingdom: Mythmaking on the Saudi Oil Frontier by Robert Vitalis
  2. Saudi Arabia and the United States: Birth of a Security Partnership by Parker T. Hart
  3. Sleeping with the Devil: How Washington Sold Our Soul for Saudi Crude by Robert Baer
  4. Florence of Arabia by Christopher Buckley
  5. Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam by Giles Kepel
  6. Middle East Monarchies: The Challenge of Modernity by Joseph Kostiner
  7. Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea
  8. Radical Islam’s Rules: The Worldwide Spread of Extreme Shari’a Law by Paul Marshall
  9. Saudi Babylon: Torture, Corruption and Cover-up Inside the House of Saud by Mark Hollingsworth
  10. Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism by Robert Pape
  11. Changed Identities: Challenge of the New Generation in Saudi Arabia by Mai Yamani
  12. Cradle of Islam : The Hijaz and the Quest for an Arabian Identity by Mai Yamani
  13. Feminism and Islam: Legal and Literary Perspectives by Mai Yamani
  14. Contesting the Saudi State: Islamic Voices from a New Generation by Madawi Al-Rasheed
  15. Counter-Narratives: History, Contemporary Society, and Politics in Saudi Arabia and Yemen by Madawi Al-Rasheed
  16. A History of Saudi Arabia by Madawi Al-Rasheed
  17. Politics in an Arabian Oasis: the Rashidi Tribal Dynasty by Madawi Al-Rasheed
  18. The Rule of Law in the Middle East and the Islamic World: Human Rights and the Judicial Process by Eugene Cotran and Mai Yamani
  19. Prophets and Princes: Saudi Arabia from Muhammad to the Present by Mark Weston and Wyche Fowler Jr.
  20. Transnational Shia Politics: Religious and Political Networks in the Gulf by Laurence Louër
  21. The Shia Revival: How Conflicts within Islam Will Shape the Future by Vali Nasr
  22. Karin in Saudi Arabia by Sami Alrabaa
  23. No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam by Reza Aslan
  24. Saudi Arabia and Its Royal Family by William Powell
  25. Islam in the World (Second Edition) by Malise Ruthven
  26. The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 by Lawrence Wright
  27. Jihad: The Rise of Militant Islam in Central Asia by Ahmed Rashid
  28. Their Blood Cries Out by Paul Marshall with Lela Gilbert
  29. A Brutal Friendship: The West and the Arab Elite by Said K. Aburish
  30. Kingdom Without Borders: Saudi Arabia’s Political, Religious, and Media Frontiers by Madawi Al-Rasheed
  31. The Siege of Mecca: The 1979 Uprising at Islam’s Holiest Shrine by Yaroslav Trofimov
  32. Musaalat Al-Dawlah Al-Saudiyah: Aswat Islamiyah Min Al-Jabal Al-Jadid (Arabic Edition) by Madawi Al-Rasheed
  33. Disfigured: A Saudi Woman’s Story of Triumph over Violence by Rania Al-Baz

Websites and other links

  1. Madawi Al Rasheed

Contact Us

The Center for Democracy & Human Rights in Saudi Arabia

1050 17th Street, NW
Suite 1000
Washington DC, 20036
United States

Phone: (202) 558–5552
Fax: (202) 536–5210


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