Saudi car­ries out 146th ex­e­cu­tion

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

RIYADH: Saudi Ara­bia yes­ter­day ex­e­cuted a cit­i­zen con­victed of killing a po­lice­man, the In­te­rior Min­istry an­nounced, bring­ing to 146 the num­ber of death sen­tences car­ried out in the king­dom this year. Ayed Al-Jah­dali was con­victed of shoot­ing dead a po­lice­man who was try­ing to ar­rest him for drug traf­fick­ing, the min­istry said in a state­ment car­ried by the of­fi­cial SPA news agency. He was ex­e­cuted in the western Mecca re­gion, it said.

Saudi ex­e­cu­tions are usu­ally car­ried out by be­head­ing with a sword. Ac­cord­ing to AFP tal­lies, his case brings to 146 the num­ber of lo­cals and for­eign­ers ex­e­cuted in the con­ser­va­tive Is­lamic king­dom this year, com­pared with 87 in 2014. Rights ex­perts have raised con­cerns about the fair­ness of tri­als in the king­dom.

Mean­while, Iran has sum­moned Saudi Ara­bia’s charge d’af­faires in Tehran af­ter the Gulf king­dom ex­e­cuted three Ira­ni­ans con­victed of drug traf­fick­ing, Iran’s of­fi­cial IRNA news agency re­ported. The Is­lamic re­pub­lic “strongly protested” the killings to the Saudi of­fi­cial, said a se­nior diplo­mat at Iran’s for­eign min­istry. The diplo­mat called on Saudi to abide by “in­ter­na­tional con­ven­tions” gov­ern­ing re­la­tion­ships be­tween coun­tries.

Riyadh on Sun­day ex­e­cuted three Ira­ni­ans con­victed of drug traf­fick­ing af­ter they at­tempted to “smug­gle a large amount of hashish by sea” into the king­dom. They were ex­e­cuted in the east­ern port city of Dam­mam, the in­te­rior min­istry said. Ac­cord­ing to AFP tal­lies, their cases bring to 145 the num­ber of lo­cals and for­eign­ers ex­e­cuted in the con­ser­va­tive Is­lamic king­dom this year, com­pared with 87 in 2014.

Un­der the king­dom’s strict Is­lamic le­gal code, mur­der, drug traf­fick­ing, armed rob­bery, rape and apos­tasy are all pun­ish­able by death. Iran it­self has one of the world’s high­est ex­e­cu­tion rates, with only China car­ry­ing out more death sen­tences each year, ac­cord­ing to rights group Amnesty In­ter­na­tional. Re­la­tions be­tween Iran and Saudi are at their low­est for years due to dis­putes over sev­eral re­gional crises as well as the deaths of 464 Ira­nian pil­grims in a stam­pede at the an­nual hajj pil­grim­age in Makkah in Septem­ber.

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