Obaida killer changes story and tells court: I didn’t rape the boy
Cave and glasshouse planned for new park
A new cave and glasshouse project costing Dhs100 million has been approved for the upcoming Quran Park in Dubai. The 60-hectare project is located in Al Khawaneej and the glasshouse contains plants mentioned in the Quran and the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammed. The project consists of 12 gardens and have solar trees with a unique design inspired by the Arab and Islamic calligraphy. The solar trees contain solar panels and Wi-Fi system with facility for charging mobile phones and shaded seats for visitors. Hussain Nasser Lootah, Director General of Dubai Municipality, which is building the park, said it will represent a “great achievement for the city of Dubai in the field of landscaping”. A man sentenced to death for murdering and raping seven-year-old Obaida Al Aqrabawi has told an appeal court that he did kill the boy – but did not kidnap or rape him,
Nedal Abdullah, 48 – who has previously admitted rape – was speaking before Dubai Court of Appeal yesterday. The hearing came after presiding Judge Eissa Mohammed Al Sharif asked Abdullah if he killed Obaida and he admitted the killing again. “Yes I killed him. I didn’t rape him or kidnap him but I had consumed alcohol,” Abdullah said in the courtroom. Abdullah, who looked confused and tired in court as he appeared with a long beard, admitted to drinking up to five bottles of vodka over the two days between Obaida’s disappearance in Sharjah and the discovery of his body in Dubai’s Al Warqa suburb on May 22. But Abdullah claimed Obaida got into his car willingly. Earlier last month, Abdullah’s lawyer asked the judge to refer his client for a medical examination, adding that Abdullah has tried to commit suicide twice in the past, with both attempts in 1999. Abdullah had previously said in court that he could not recall what had happened, but did not dispute prosecutors’ claims about the rape. The appeal court said the date of the next hearing would be announced soon. Obaida’s father attended the hearing but did not speak. He has previously asked that Abdullah be hanged in public. Death sentence cases are automatically heard by the appeal court and the laststage cassation court. Abdullah remains in custody at Dubai’s Al Awir Central Jail.
ON TRIAL: Nedal Abdullah; (top) Obaida