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Rights group assails Saudi prison flogging

Aug. 28, 2012 at 2:47 PM

CAIRO, Aug. 28 (UPI) -- An Egyptian wedding planner and designer involved in a business dispute with a Saudi princess is being flogged in prison, human rights activists say.

Nagla Wafa, 39, was accused in Saudi Arabia of cashing a check from an unnamed member of the Saudi royal family but not following through on their business deal to begin a restaurant, her family says. She was formally accused of fraud charges in 2009, 20 months after her arrest.

She "has been subjected, on a weekly basis, to 50 floggings per week within the Al-Malz prison," the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights said in a statement. The group called the case a "blatant violation" of human rights and filed a complaint with the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Human Rights, it said.

The case is a prominent example of alleged mistreatment of Egyptian nationals who move to Saudi Arabia for better job opportunities, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

About 2 million Egyptians live and work in Saudi Arabia, and human-rights activists have repeatedly accused Saudi officials of mistreating Egyptians nationals, the newspaper said, adding that neither Egyptian nor Saudi government officials have offered comment on Wafa's case.

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