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Arabic press review: Mauritanian political leader detained in Saudi Arabia

Meanwhile, the full extent of Sisi's executions is revealed and the Syrian government ventures abroad
Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz greets Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Nouakchott in December 2018 (AFP)

Saudi Arabia arrests leader of Mauritanian party

Saudi security authorities have held a Mauritanian political party leader for more than a month, according to the Nouakchott-based Al-Akhbar news website.

Yousef Ould Horma Ould Babana, head of the Rally for Mauritania party, was attempting to leave Saudi Arabia for Morocco to attend the funeral of his uncle in early January when he was arrested at Jeddah airport, the website reported.

The unnamed sources did not disclose what prompted Saudi security to arrest Babana, nor the charges brought against him.

The alleged arrest has surprised many Mauritanians because it comes at a time when ties between the Mauritanian president Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman are particularly strong.

The crown prince visited Mauritania in December and, a month later, the Mauritanian parliament authorised a cooperation agreement between the two countries to fight terrorism, organised crime and arms trafficking.

52 Egyptians executed in political cases under Sisi

Egyptian authorities have carried out 52 executions against citizens opposed to the 2013 military coup that brought president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to power, reports online website Arabi21

Those executed were convicted in 13 political cases, all tried in extraordinary courts which have no guarantee of fair trials, international lawyers and human rights advocates told the website.

Using the non-jurisdiction courts, called extraordinary chambers of terrorism, is a violation of the Egyptian Constitution and the law of the judiciary, the sources told Arabi 21.

Fifty further detainees who opposed the coup are currently awaiting executions after they were sentenced to death in eight other political cases. The death sentences cannot be appealed, according to the website.

Syrian Parliament participates in a conference held in Jordan

A Syrian delegation will participate in an upcoming Arab Inter-Parliamentary Union conference to be held in Amman, according to the Jordanian newspaper al-Ghad.

Hammouda Sabbagh, head of the Syrian parliament, will lead the delegation to the 29th meeting of the body, which has brought Arab lawmakers together regularly following its creation after the 1973 October War. 

Speaker of the Jordanian House of Representatives, Atef Tarawneh, has said that the conference will focus on Jerusalem, and comes as Arab countries work together to bring Palestinian issues to the top of their agenda.

The Deputy Speaker of the Jordanian House of Representatives, Nassar al-Qaisi, told the paper that he appreciated that Syria had accepted Jordan's invitation to the conference and stressed that joint Arab parliamentary action will be the solution to many of the issues facing both countries.

* Arabic press review is a digest of reports that are not independently verified as accurate by Middle East Eye.