Saudi Arabia to Execute 50 on Terrorism Charges

Saudi Arabia to Execute 50 on Terrorism ChargesSaudi Arabia to Execute 50 on Terrorism Charges

Amnesty International has expressed alarm at reports that the authorities in Saudi Arabia are planning to execute dozens of people in a single day.

The newspaper Okaz said 55 people were awaiting execution after being charged with “terrorist crimes”, while a now-deleted report by Al Riyadh said 52 would die soon.

They are thought to include Shia who took part in anti-government protests.

Amnesty said that given the spike in executions this year, it had no option but to take the reports very seriously, BBC reported.

The group believes at least 151 people have been put to death in Saudi Arabia so far this year—the highest recorded figure since 1995.

In 2014, the total number of executions carried out was reported to be 90.

 ’Unfair Trials’

The Saudi newspaper’s reports claimed those facing execution in the coming days included “Al-Qaeda terrorists” and people from the Awamiya area.

The alleged Al-Qaeda militants were accused of attempting to overthrow the government and carry out attacks using small arms, explosives and surface-to-air missiles, Okaz reported.

The Awamiya residents were convicted of sedition, attacks on security personnel and interference in neighboring Bahrain, it said.

Awamiya is a town in the Qatif region of oil-rich Eastern Province.

Since 2011, it has been the center of protests by Saudi Arabia’s Shia minority, which has long complained of marginalization at the hands of the monarchy.