Here is the e-mail received from Nathalie today at 6:47 PM:
"today july 8th 2013 i arrived at the canadian embassy in riyadh at
8:30am local time with my 3 children. We stayed one hour in the entry
hall and my kids began to cry because they were hungry. Canadian
consul , rene dagenais refused to give them something to eat and
instead he called saeed to come back in order to take the kids out the
embassy. After feeding saeed brought them back and left again , but
canadian officials refused to let the kids entering again inside
embassy. My children stayed one hour at the gate in hot weather ! I
saw my eldest son samir standing outside and i decided to go talk to
him. He cried while saying me that canada doesn't let him to enter. I
said to the security guards that my son is canadian and were born in
canada. They replied that their manager inside embassy refused. I
stayed inside canadian embassy from 8:30am to 4:3
0pm without food , without drink and i spoke to the canadian consul
rene dagenais only 3 times in the entry hall. At 4:30pm , rene
dagenais came to me again with an agent of security, ron surwaj in
order to say that i'm illegal inside canadian embassy and ron surwaj
will kick me out. I said no, it's my right to stay inside the embassy
as canadian national and i need help. rene dagenais replied that he
will call the police for me and i will be arrested in jail for having
stayed at the canadian embassy. I said, i'm not afraid ! Call the
police, i'm waiting. Rene dagenais said to ron surwaj to come with him
outside , because he will go take saeed to me. After, rene dagenais
asked me to go talking to saeed at the gate and when i came near , i
felt someone pushed me in my back and i looked behind, i saw ron
surwaj. Saeed got angry and me too ! How they could do that to
canadian national ! We began to have fight and rene dagenais did
repeat again that he will call the police for me. Many canadian
officials of male gender was outside watching us and many others on
the street + many security guards. I asked the name of ron surwaj and
he replied to me "oh sure, take it and i hope you write my name on
your web site". rene dagenais said to a security guard to open the
gate for me and he gave me my stuff. He said move now and don't come
back anymore while around 12 men were watching behind rene dagenais.
i need the surveillance cameras who took all pictures & videos
of july 8th 2013 . Surveillance cameras are witnesses and i need it as
proof before canadian officials goes to delete the day of july 8th
2013 on their surveillance records. nathalie morin "
Since Monday, June 13th, Saeed has not allowed Nathalie to talk to her mother. Then, we do not have any news from her... until Saeed accepts to give her back a phone.
Nathalie's mother, Mrs Durocher, received an e-mail from Mrs Huda who works at the Human Rights Commission, a Saudi governmental association.
Nathalie went to see her today at her office - that means her common-law partner brought her and she is not in Bisha as he tried to make us think. Nathalie was upset Mrs Huda asked Mrs Durocher to stop to send her some money because Saeed Al Sharahni does not work and so do not have money for the family.
Since Monday, June 13th we do not have any news from Nathalie. Rumors say Saeed brought her to Bisha, others say she is still in Dammam.
On Monday, Nathalie's declarations are published in Saudi Arabia.
Two Canadian consular officials go to Dammam to visit Nathalie. They also go to the police station where Nathalie was arrested. They confirm they will be no charge against Nathalie but her file is still "under investigation".
Last brief contact with Nathalie and her mother over the phone. Since then, Saeed refuses she speaks to anybody - as wel as her mother than Canadian consular officials from Riyad.
Placed under stress, Nathalie makes false declarations to the Saudi press. Her message is the following: her mother tried to kidnapp her. She wants to stay in Saudi Arabia where is she happy with her husband.
The Support Committee denies this testimony under stress in a press release on June 15th.
Text messages received from Nathalie:
1er message, 7h02 AM: « since today 9:35am local time, i'm with my kids being held by force in a tent
in the middle of the desert between dammam and riyadh. With 1 man and en, friend of saeed, but saeed
is not with us. They don't know the mobile is with me, they think i forgot it or lost it at home. I'm
writing in hese people are smoking marijuana and i'm scare. »
2e message, 10h44 AM: « we are on the highway on the way back home. I'm writing in secret from
public ladies toilet. On the phone, saeed told me than he will don’t judge ut i must to say what he wants
if I speak with anybody from government or media. Also he told me than very soon we may go to
bisha. I been held in the middle of the desert with my kids by 1 men and 2 woman during 8 hours
today. Saeed is waiting us home!!! »
Johanne Durocher contacts Ms. Wajeeha Al-Huwaider, Saudi journalist and feminist activist. Nathalie and the children no longer have food or drinkable water and Saeed Al Sharahni has been gone for two days. He is not supposed to return before June 9th. Ms. Durocher asks Ms. Al-Huwaider to bring some money to Nathalie and take her to the grocery store.
Ms. Al-Huwaider goes to Nathalie's apartment with one of her friends, Fouzia Al-Uyouni. Nathalie is able to get out of the apartment when Ms. Al-Huwaider call because she has a hidden key. This key was made by Johanne Durocher in 2009 when she went to Saudi Arabia. Nathalie has been hiding it since them. Nathalie thus went to meet Ms. Al-Huwaider with the children. She doesn't want to leave them alone in the apartment. Remember that they are between the ages of 2 and 8.
When Nathalie meets Ms. Al-Huwaider, Saeed is waiting in a police car. He gets outs and makes Nathalie go back to the apartment. From her window, as she is explaining to her her mother what has just happened over the phone, she sees another police car arrive. The two Saudi women are escorted to the police station by the two cars, where they are interrogated for several hours.
Nathalie is also taken to the police station and interrogated for 2 hours. She is informed that she will be summoned the following sunday and will face charges for attempted kidnapping.
Last night Saeed woke Nathalie at 3:00 am. He told her to go wash her face because they would be leaving. Nathalie went to the bathroom.
When she came out, he old her that they would be leaving in 20 minutes and to go sit in the living room for now. She sat on the couch.
There was a movie on TV: A true story. She listened to the film. The story took place in Iran. A muslim husband wanted to rid himself of his wife. So he decided to acuse her of adultery and made up a whole scenario. At the end of the movie the whole village believes the man and the woman is publicly stoned to death and dies.
When the film is over, Saeed tells Nathalie that they are not going anywhere and that she should return to bed. It was 5:00 am. Without speaking a word, Nathalie went back to bed.
For two months now Nathalie has a dry cough and fatigue. On september 15th, Saeed took Abdullah and Samir to the Saad hospital because they were also coughing. Abdullah received medication for asthma and Samir received a cough syrup. As for Nathalie, she also managed to see a doctor, but in the presence of Saeed. This doctor prescribed her medication for stomach ulcers and gastric reflux, and told her she had problems related to someone who doesn't go outside. He recommended that Nathalie go outside at least one hour per day or else her symptoms would not improve despite the medication. But Nathalie cannot go outside one hour per day.
The following week Sarah who is 22 months old also became sick and Nathalie wasn't feeling better. Saeed once again went to the hospital on September 22nd. The second doctor seen by Nathalie told her she had inflammation in her lungs and needed to see a lung specialist. This doctor prescribed her cortisone and antibiotics. This new prescription reduced her cough but she is still short of breath and must sleep sitting up. For Saeed, it is out of the question that Nathalie see a lung specialist.
Presently, all 3 children have asthma or are coughing : Abdullah, age 4, must use two pumps twice daily for over a year and needs to chew medicated gum before bedtime to help him breath. As for Samir, he has not yet seen a psychologist nor received therapy as was recommended by the paediatrician from the Saad Hospital at the beginning of 2009. At age 8, Samir is not able to clearly express himself in either French, Arabic or English. His education situation is poor and will not improve this year as he has just started school late and is already behind.
The apartment where Nathalie and the children are living is unsanitary: Water is leaking from pipes in the kitchen and bathroom. Mold is apparent in the home. For several months now, Nathalie does not have soap for washing. She tries to clean the mold with water, but it doesn't go away.
On several occasions, Johanne Durocher, Nathalie's mother, has written to Canadian Foreign Affairs to report this situation, but nothing is happening. The Canadian Government refers Nathalie to the Human Rights Commission in Saudi Arabia. This commission tells Nathalie that they can do nothing for her because she is Canadian.
Nathalie has never received a call from the Canadian Embassy to ask how she is doing, nor if her situation has improved. The Embassy nonetheless knows the situation of risk of their national. The Canadian and Saudi Governments are closing their eyes and act minimally and only when they are pressed. Every time, they manage to avoid intervening and leave Nathalie and her children to their fate.
SMS sent today by Nathalie:
"Saeed has just bought a new iphone, one jeans Georgio Armani, one jeans Dolce Gabana, one t-shirt Dolce Gabana, a cap Ferrari and Christian Dior perfume. The children and I can't go out of the appartment and we eat flour and water, dates and white rice!!!"
Ramadan having begun on August 11th, Nathalie and her children remain deprived of food both night and day. They receive only bread and water.
Ramadan is the time of year when Muslims are asked to be compassionate and when charitable actions and generosity are encouraged. But such is not so for Nathalie and her three children in Saudi Arabia! Bread, water, an apartment without air conditioning in 40 degree Centrigrade weather, sealed windows...
We are asking the Saudi government, the Human Rights Commission, the Saudi National Society for Human Rights (NSHR) as well as the Canadian Embassy in Saudi Arabia: Help these three children and their mother who are dying of hunger and heat in an apartment in Dammam, while their male guardian, Saeed Al Sharahni, only takes care of himself!
Here is an SMS message that Nathalie was able to send to a Support Committee member on August 17th, 2010:
"I am nathalie morin.
My 3 children and I are confined in an overheated apartment due to the lack of an air conditioner.
No furniture, because Saeed has sold 80% of the furniture.
We are eating bread and drinking water. The toilet won't flush.
The stench of the toilet fills the apartment.
My 3 children and I wish to come home to Canada."
What is the Saudi government, the NSHR, the Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Embassy waiting for to help these four human beings who are dying of hunger and heat in a Damman apartment?! We are demanding an emergency intervention for Nathalie, Samir, Abdullah and Sarah who will not survive very long under such conditions.
Why are they not entitled to human living conditions? Why are you allowing Saeed Al Sharahni, father of Nathalie's three children, to act in such a manner entowards his family? Nathalie Morin's Support Committee as well as her mother, Johanne Durocher, are asking that you defend and protect these four victims before it is too late. We are demanding that they be freed from their agressor and that their return home to Canada and their family be facilitated.
Text message received from Nathalie on Sunday, July 25th:
"this is me Nahtalie. saeed is in the shower. I write in secret. saeed sold my air-conditioner. I said why. he hit me in the face and in the stomach."
Nathalie is again in Dammam, where she was before her departure for Bisha. Since her return, she has met twice with the Saudi governmental human rights organisation, the National Society for Human Rights (NSHR).
Despite a meeting between the Canadian Embassador in Riyadh, Mr. David Chatterson, and the president of the Saudi NSHR last week, there appears to be no agreement regarding Nathalie and her children. According to Nicolas Gauthier, Canadian consular agent in Riyadh, the meeting only consisted in keeping Nathalie's file open and did not concern ensuring food for Nathalie or the children.
The Canadian Embassy has always discredited Nathalie and has never believed what she says. Today, the embassy seems to have a different opinion than Foreign Affairs in Ottawa and could be attributing more credibility to her claims.
Saeed refuses to buy food for Nathalie and the children. For the Saudi NSHR, they will not provide food for them because it is not within their mandate. A woman within this organisation paid for food for Nathalie and the chidlren out of her own pocket.
Briefly, Saeed refuses to feed his family and the Saudi NSHR doesn't seem to be able to help Nathalie. The Canadian government is not favouring the safety of its 4 nationals such that they may be sent to a safe location.
Nathalie Morin's Support Committee is requesting that the Canadian government at the very least ensure the safety and well-being of Nathalie and the children by facilitating theur admission to a shelter for women who are victims of conjugal violence in Djeddah, leading towards her return to Canada. This shelter seems to be the only place where she could find safety with her children and receive appropriate psychological support.
We are all very worried for Nathalie and her children. The situation is worsening and becoming all the more dire.
Johanne, Nathalie's mother, is very concerned. For her it is intolerable to see her daughter and grandchildren live in danger every day where their physical safety is compromised and their vital needs not respected. She has asked that the Canadian government and embassy in Riyadh to act so that her daughter and grandchildren are brought to safety.
Johanne thanks you for all of your words of support, of indignation and of encouragement. This is very important to her.
Also, if you would like to show you support for Nathalie you can write directly to the Canadian Embassador in Riyadh, M. Chatterson - email@example.com - to the consular services of this embassy - firstname.lastname@example.org - and to Minister Cannon - email@example.com.
Thank you for your support that is well needed.
Nathalie Morin's Support Committee
On Saturday July 10th, Saeed returned from Riyadh after meeting with Saudi authorities. He did not the receive money he was requesting from them.
Upon his return to Bisha, in order to avenge for the money not received, Saeed's family removed Nathalie from the storage room where she has been locked and locked her in another room. Members of Saeed's family then went into the storage room and stole the few belongings that Nathalie had, inlcuding the children's clothes and toys. Saeed's family in so doing sought to reimburse themselves for the food given to Nathalie and her children.
Today, Nathalie and the children are deprived of food. Samir who will be 8 in a few days is silent, but Abdullah who is 4 is constantly repeating that he is hungry. Sarah, 20 months old, is still breastfed by Nathalie.
Since Saturday, July the 3rd, Saeed and his family have deprived Nathalie and her children of food. They have access to bread & dates only. They seem not to be deprived of water.
Today, Saeed gave Nathalie a cell phone to call her mother and tell her about the situation she has been living with her children for 2 days.
Because of the lack of food and the presure she undergoes from Saeed & her mother (Jamila Abdullah Sultan Al Amri) in the last days, Nathalie is in a great distress.
Translation of text messages between Nathalie and Nicolas Gauthier, Canadian Embassy Official in Riyadh, and Nathalie and a committee member:
"Saeed's mother told me to advise Saeed that he should buy me food because she is too poor to feed me. When Saeed came into my storage room I gave him the message. He went to buy me a box of indomie sooup and when he came back he told me to never ask him for food again or else he will come kill us, me and everyone in the house, with the machine gun of one of his cousins."
Nicolas Gauthier's reply:
"Do you really think he will return with a machine-gun? Can't your mother send you money for food?"
"I replied to Nicolas Gauthier that my mother will not engage in Saeed's bribery and to the contrary she will request the repatriation of my 3 kids to Canada. Because Saeed is crazy and dangerous. This is what I replied to Nicolas Gauthier today."
Since June 12th, nobody was able to communicate with Nathalie, neither her mother nor the Canadian Embassy. The last news we had his a text message (SMS) sent from Nathalie on June 15th where she denies to have attempt to commit suicide.
Every day, Nathalie's mother calls all the phone numbers she has (4) and try to reach Nathalie. Nobody answers. If by error, Saeed's mother answers thephone, she hangs up immediately when she hears Johanne's voice.
Saeed sent meassages to the Canadian Embassy in Riyad to inform that Nathalie had attempted to commit suicide. He sent the same messages to Johanne, Nathalie's mother. We were very worried because when she is discouraged, Nathalie talks about suicide. Latter in the day, Nathalie was able to send to text message (SMS) to her mother and a member of the Canadian Embassy in Riyad. She denied having attempted to commit suicide. So, it was a plot organized by Saeed to scare everyone.
Since then, nobody has been able to communicate with Nathalie, nor the Canadian Embassy.
Today, Saeed told Nathalie that it was no longer necessary for her to be in the locker. He bought her some ground steak and hamburger buns. His family must think that Westerners eat only hamburgers because as soon as she is permitted to eat, it is always hamburgers.
She has been clearly warned, that if she wants a TV, a computer, an iPod, a board game, a book, paper and crayons, she must return to Canada.
She does not have the right to leave the small lounge where she is.
If she escapes, they will send the police after her and send her to the embassy.
According to Nathalie, most of the people of the village, who are Al Sharahnis, know that she is a prisoner in her living room. But the people of Bisha, according to Nathalie, hate Westerners.
Since this morning, Nathalie is locked in the small cell. Yesterday for food, she received three pitas and 24 dates. Today it is only bread and water. Saeed’s mother leaves the food on the floor at the foot of the door and knocks once to say the food is there. A prisoner in her cubby hole, Nathalie opens the door and finds food on the floor.
With her, she has her suitcases with her personal belongings. She is not allowed to ask to go the restroom. When she is permitted to leave to change Sarah’s diaper, she takes the opportunity to go to the bathroom herself, quickly so it goes unnoticed. She cannot take a shower, nor wash her clothes. If she tries to leave her cell, Saeed is notified and slaps her.
Yesterday, Nathalie heard Sarah crying very loudly and wanted to leave her cell to go to the little girl, but her mother-in-law refused and Nathalie had to go back to her cell.
The end of last week, (May 21st to 23rd), Nathalie received a meal Friday evening around 11:00 with water. The next meal was not until Sunday morning at 9:30. A cheese sandwhich with yogurt and
Saturday, Saeed beat Nathalie again.
Monday, however, after some calls by Nathalie’s mother to the Emergency Services of Canada Foreign Affairs AND to the National Society for Human Rights in Saudi Arabia (NSHR), Nathalie received 3 meals (we don’t know who intervened or even if anyone did). It is the first time since her arrival in Bisha. All three times, Saeed took her out of her cell, took her to the kitchen, gave her ground steak and hamburger buns and told her to make hamburgers. He remained beside her to insure that she touched nothing else. So, for breakfast, lunch and supper, she had hamburgers, diet Pepsi and as of today, she is allowed the telephone.
Her mother recounts: “I spoke for some time with Nathalie and I must tell you that when she has eaten she is completely different, even if she doesn’t believe it is possible for her to leave. Except that she is always in the cell, because Saeed’s family does not wish to see her.”
4:00pm in Saudi Arabia: Nathalie calls her mother in tears. She has been again locked in her cell (a room of 1m x a few meters [approximately 3 feet by 9 feet]), and she is not permitted to leave. Saeed harasses her constantly. At her wits end, Nathalie swallows the 12 Tylenols she has with her. Then she vomits. The last time she has had food and water was the night before at 10pm. Nathalie is reaching her limit.
This weekend is very difficult for Nathalie. She is locked in a small room of 2m X 5m [6’6” X 16’6”]. She is forbidden food and water. Saeed Al Sharahni has beaten her several times. The Saudi government has started to negotiate with Saeed to liberate Nathalie and her children.