Saudis in capital protest for release of prisoners

February 9, 2013 - 12:30 PM

CAIRO (AP) — Residents of the Saudi Arabian capital Riyadh say more than 100 people have demonstrated to call for the release of people detained without charge.

Saudi security officials say they arrested at least five people. They spoke anonymously in line with police regulations.

Dozens of security vehicles blocked the intersections of two streets Saturday where the demonstrations were taking place.

North of Riyadh in the city of Buraydah, around 30 people — mostly women related to the prisoners — held a similar rally.

In past years, a small number of Saudis have demonstrated in Riyadh to demand the release of thousands of people detained without charge or trial on suspicion of involvement in militant activity. Some have been held for up to 15 years.

Protests are rare in the conservative kingdom.