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“If you don’t see me on social media anymore, that means I’m going to die.” The disappearance of the activist Nouf Al-Maadeed, 23, in Qatar: Doubts about the family

In October, she returned to Qatar from the United Kingdom from the family from which she had already fled once. Young feminist activist Nouf Al-Maadeed arrived in her country with a promise not to imprison her, but after setting foot in Qatar again, the 23-year-old appears to have vanished into thin air. “If you don’t see me on social media anymore, that means I’m going to die,” Nouf Al-Maadeed wrote on Twitter and Instagram in early October. Then a few short messages followed by silence. The appeal of the human rights groups that know the young woman now is addressed to the Qatari authorities: “We want proof that the 23-year-old is still alive,” and they declare their conviction that Nouf Al-Maadid is currently detained “in some way or even dead.”

She said if she stopped posting on social media, she would die. Khaled Ibrahim, President of the Gulf Center for Human Rights (GCHR), continued, “So we are simply acting according to what we have been asked to do. The organization is based in Beirut and works against human rights violations in the Middle East. According to Ibrahim, the 23-year-old may have been killed by family. He explains: “Nouf Al-Maadid published daily updates on his life, and the fact that he no longer does so is at least a symptom of arrest if not something more serious. In particular, it is feared that it will end up returning to the hands of her family from whom she ran away two years ago after allegations Attempts to assassinate himand documenting his escape on social networks.” For their part, the Qatari authorities confirmed that the girl “is currently safe and in good health,” but she cannot speak “because of the request for family privacy.” But from the Gulf Center for Human Rights, doubts and fears about Nouf have not diminished: “The government can Qatar Airways can easily prove to the international community that it is alive. They have no evidence and this worries us,” they reply.

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Harold Manning

"Infuriatingly humble social media ninja. Devoted travel junkie. Student. Avid internet lover."

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