Missing Saudi princess pleads royal family to release her
In a series of tweets on her official Twitter profile, Princess Basmah said she was abducted with her daughter without explanation and held in Al-Hair Prison - a maximum-security facility south of capital Riyadh - without criminal charges.
Citing "very critical" health issues, the 56-year-old princess - who is the youngest daughter of Saudi Arabia's second ruler King Abdulaziz - asked the royal family for her freedom.
"My health is deteriorating to an extent that is serve [sic], and that could lead to my death," said Princess Basmah. "I have not received medical care or even response to the letters I dispatched from jail to the Royal Court."
The official Twitter account of Princess Basmah's media office retweeted her pleas and shared a number of news articles pertaining to her detention.
The princess has written a number of rights-related articles for various news outlets. She has also advocated for constitutional reforms and criticised uneven power structures in the kingdom.
During a 2018 BBC interview, Princess Basmah called for an end to Saudi Arabia's military intervention in Yemen.
"I am still an obedient citizen and I will always be behind the royal family," she told The Independent in 2012.
"But I will never be quiet about what is happening on the ground."
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Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS), Saudi Arabia's de-facto ruler, has conducted repeated crackdowns on senior royal family members as recently as last month.
In March, Saudi authorities arrested three princes - including King Salman's brother and nephew - on charges of "plotting a coup to unseat the king and crown prince".
The detained royals could face lifetime imprisonment or execution.
MbS' most stunning purge was launched in 2017, when hundreds of Saudi royals, government officials, and business people were rounded up and detained at Riyadh's Ritz Carlton hotel.
While Saudi officials stated the sweep aimed to tackle corruption in the kingdom, analysts and critics chalked the purge up to MbS' efforts to consolidate power and sideline perceived rivals.
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