2015 Archives

November 4th, 2016

Arabia: Three more executions add to unprecedented spike in death penalty 11 March 2015, 15:18 UTC AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL Saudi Arabia is well on track to far surpass its previous annual execution records, Amnesty International warned after three more men were put to death this morning, bringing the total number of executions in the country to 44 so far this year. That is fully four times the number of people executed in the Gulf Kingdom during the same period last year – 11. Public beheading is the most common method of execution.“This unprecedented spike in executions constitutes a chilling race to the bottom for a country that is already among the most prolific executioners on the planet.” Said Boumedouha, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Programme. Read More… in ENG AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL January 13, 2015

SENTENCE AGAINST HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDER UPHELD Saudi Arabian human rights defender and lawyer Waleed Abu al-Khair has had his sentence upheld upon appeal and will be serving the full 15 years in prison. He is a prisoner of conscience. Waleed Abu al-Khair , a prominent human rights defender and lawyer, has had his sentence upheld upon appealby the Specialized Criminal Court (SCC) in Riyadh on 12 January. The judge has also ordered that he now mustserve the full 15-year prison sentence because he has refused to apologize for his “offences”. In his original trial,Waleed Abu al-Khair was sentenced to 15 years in prison, but was ordered to serve only 10. He continues to refuserecognizing the legitimacy of the SCC. More…

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL URGENT ACTION 1/9/2015 RAIF BADAWI FLOGGED IN VICIOUS ACT OF CRUELTY Saudi Arabian activist Raif Badawi was publicly flogged on 9 January in front of the al-Jafali mosque in Jeddah. He is at risk of receiving the remaining 950 lashes over the coming weeks. Raif Badawi received his first set of 50 lashes on 9 January. According to a witness, he was removed from a bus in shackles and brought to the public square in front of the mosque after the prayers ended. Surrounded by a crowd made up of the public and a number of security officers, he received 50 consecutive lashes on his back and legs. The whole ordeal lasted around 15 minutes. Afterwards he was put back in the bus and taken away. It is feared that Raif Badawi will receive his next set of lashes within two weeks. According to the final court decision, he will be receiving no more than 50 lashes per session, with a break of no less than a week between sessions. Flogging violates the absolute prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment and punishment in international law. More . . .

AMNESTY 1/8/2015 URGENT ACTION Amnesty International received information that Raif Badawi will be flogged after the Friday prayers on 9 January in front of al-Jafali mosque in Jeddah. The flogging is to be carried out in public. Raif Badawi was sentenced by the Criminal Court in Jeddah on 7 May 2014 to 10-years in prison and 1,000 lashes, followed by a 10-year travel ban, a ban on using media outlets, and a fine of one million Saudi Arabian riyals (about US $266,600). The conviction and sentence stemmed from Raif Badawi’s creation of the Saudi Arabian Liberals website (which the court ordered to be closed) and the accusation that he had “insulted Islam”. The Court of Appeal in Jeddah upheld the sentence on 1 September. According to the final court decision, Raif Badawi will be receiving no more than 50 lashes per session, with a break of no less than a week between sessions. Raif Badawi was initially charged with “apostasy”, a crime that carries the death penalty in Saudi Arabia. More…