22 March 2018

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11/27/2015 SAUDI ARABIA

Riyadh plans mass execution of 55 people in one day

These include those convicted of crimes related to terrorism and internal revolt. The executions are "imminent". In 2015 151 people executed, the highest number since 1995. Activists: the government uses the death sentences to solve the problem of internal dissidence.

Riyadh (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Human rights activists and organizations are sounding the alarm following the news that Saudi Arabia is planning a mass execution of dozens of people in a single day .

According to the newspaper Okaz, quoted by the BBC, at least 55 people will be executed for "crimes of terrorism"; also the website of the newspaper al-Riyadh published an article – later removed - that 52 executions were "imminent".

Those waiting on death row include some Shiites, who participated in anti-government protests in the past. Human rights activists point to the increasing number of death sentences carried out this year in the kingdom; warning that the news of a possible mass execution is to be taken very carefully and seriously.

In 2015 at least 151 people were executed, the highest number since 1995. Last year the figure had stood at 90.

According to reports from the Saudi newspaper, among those who will be executed are "al Qaeda terrorists" and six people in the area of Awamiya, a city of Qatif region, an area rich in oil in the eastern province. The latter were convicted of rebellion, attacks on security personnel and interference in neighboring Bahrain

Human Rights experts and organizations stress that the Saudi government uses charges of terrorism and rebellion, as in the case of six young activists Awamiya, to "stiffle political dissent" and internal problems with minorities. In recent days, the mothers of five of the six young people in the city waiting to be executed, wrote a letter to King Salman, in which they ask the monarch to pardon their children. 

Various NGOs have also asked the government to stop the executions and to remove the veil of secrecy and mystery that covers cases of death sentences.

For years the main human rights organizations and many Western governments have been fighting to force Saudi Arabia (Sunni Wahhabi) into ensuring  fairer trials and more humane executions. Saudi Arabia - in which there is a strict observance of sharia, Islamic law - is the only country in the world where the death penalty can be executed by beheading in the public square.

Capital punishment in the kingdom is dealt out to the perpetrators of murder, armed robbery, rape and drug trafficking, but also for witchcraft and sodomy. No less cruel are the sentences for minor crimes such as theft and the crime of opinion, which in addition to imprisonment, involves the cutting of the hand or foot and public flogging.

See also

11/10/2017 08:58:00 UN - ASIA
U.N. Chief says death penalty has 'no place in 21st century’

He urged member states that still carry out executions to join the 170 countries that have halted or abolished the practice. China, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Iraq responsible for 87 per cent of all recorded executions. In 2016, executions worldwide were down 37 per cent from 2015. The risk of a miscarriage of justice is an "unacceptably high price" to pay.


03/10/2017 09:53:00 SAUDI ARABIA
Saudi Arabia reaches one hundred executions in 2017

The convict was executed for the murder of a fellow citizen. Recently the sentence was confirmed in appeal. Since July, the authorities have conducted an average of five executions per week. Activists denounce government's justice "frenzy". Among the reforms to promote the "moratorium on the death penalty".

21/03/2018 09:31:00 SAUDI ARABIA - INDONESIA
Saudi executions continue as Indonesian migrant beheaded for (alleged) homicide

The 53-year-old Zaini Misrin was sentenced to death. He was accused of killing his employer in 2004. During the trial, the right to defence was denied and the confession was extorted with deception. Since the rise to power of Mohammed bin Salman the number of executions have doubled.

11/08/2006 INDONESIA
Last wish of Indonesian Catholic on death row

Domani Fabianus Tibo will be unjustly executed by firing squad together with his friends da Silva and Riwu. His last words are an appeal to the president and a denunciation of the country's legal system. The sorrow of the Catholic community: "used as scapegoats". Mgr Mandagi will preside over the funerals.

08/11/2008 PAKISTAN
Pakistani Church against death penalty for cyber terrorists
The law signed by President Zardari includes the possibility of the death penalty for those found guilty of terrorism using the internet and computers. The justice and peace commission warns the government: "brutal punishments cannot correct or redeem our society." Criticism also from the human rights commission: this increases distrust of the judicial system.

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