Saudi court convicts women's rights activist

A Saudi court has sentenced a prominent women's rights activist to more than 5 years in prison.

Multiple local media outlets reported Loujain al-Hathloul was charged on Monday with seeking to change the Saudi political system and harming national security under broad counter-terrorism laws.

She was sentenced to a prison term of 5 years 8 months. Some outlets report that a conditional release could follow.

Saudi Arabia lifted its ban against women driving in 2018, and loosened certain restrictions.

But international human rights groups have voiced concern over women's rights activists who have been reportedly detained by authorities.

The office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights called for an early release of Hathloul.
Commenting on her sentence, the UN agency said that they understand "early release is possible, and strongly encourage it as matter of urgency."