In Saudi Arabia, Dissent Is Alive and Well, but Only Online or in Private

Riyadh polices its streets and cafés with a fearsome rigor, but it doesn't seem to know how to shut down the chatter on Twitter and Facebook. By Jacob Templin in on TIME.

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Every Tuesday night, a few dozen people squeeze into Waleed Abu Alkhair’s living room in the port city of Jidda, Saudi Arabia. Over tea and dates, they share opinions that could get them arrested if uttered in public. “If you ask people, they are afraid because they know the costs are very high,” says Abu Alkhair, a former civil rights lawyer and activist. “You can see this is a very small house, but we don’t have any other place.”

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