Mohammed Al-Rukn

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Mohammed Abdullah Al-Rukn
Born (1962-09-26) September 26, 1962 (age 57)
Other namesMohamed Al-Roken, Mohammed Abdulla Al Roken
EducationPh.D., constitutional law, Warwick University
Occupationlawyer, political activist
Known forconstitutional law expertise, imprisoned for human rights activity
MovementEmirati political opposition
Criminal statusmissing, presumed incarcerated
Spouse(s)Umm Rashid[1]
ChildrenRashid al-Roken
RelativesAbdulla al-Hajeri (son in law)

Dr. Mohammed Abdullah Al-Rukn (Arabic: د. محمد عبدالله الركن‎) is an Emirati lawyer and political activist who was born on 26 September 1962. Al-Rukn was incarcerated because of his human rights activities and his representation of other Emirati political opposition figures.

Early life[edit]

Al-Rukn was born in Dubai, UAE to a modest family of Arab ancestry. He attended primary schools in Dubai, where he was a quick learner. Later he was granted a scholarship to the United States to study chemical engineering, but decided instead to study law.[2]

He attended the United Arab Emirates University, Faculty of Law in 1981 and graduated with excellence in 1985 with a bachelor's degree in law and a minor in political science. While at university he was an administrative body of the Emirates National Students Union.[3]

In 1985 Al-Rukn attended Warwick University and graduated with a degree in constitutional law. In 1992 he completed his Ph.D. in constitutional law from the same university.[3]

Human rights activism and incarceration[edit]

Al-Rukn had defended members of al-Islah, a Muslim Brotherhood affiliated group. In 2011 he served as co-defense counsel for two of the activists, known as the UAE 5, who were imprisoned for seven months prosecuted for allegedly posting statements on an internet forum critical of the UAE's leaders and government policies. Government authorities have long prevented al-Rukn from lecturing at Al Ain University due to his outspoken views on the UAE government.[4]

Dr. Al-Rukn was detained on July 17, 2012. His current whereabouts are unknown.[4]

On May 27th 2017, he was designated as the prizewinner of the 22nd Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize.[5]


  1. ^ Associated Press. Family: UAE detains prominent rights lawyer, 17 July 2012.
  2. ^ United Arab Emirates University
  3. ^ a b UAE Prisoners website, July 20, 2012
  4. ^ a b UAE: US, UK Should Criticize Dissident Arrests, Human Rights Watch, August 1, 2012. Retrieved April 9, 2013.
  5. ^ "Mohammed al-Roken (United Arab Emirates), Prizewinner of International Human Rights Prize "Ludovic-Trarieux" 2017". Retrieved 2019-07-24.

External links[edit]