Amnesty Tells Saudi Rulers to Stop ‘Bloody Executions’

Amnesty Tells Saudi Rulers to Stop ‘Bloody Executions’Amnesty Tells Saudi Rulers to Stop ‘Bloody Executions’

Amnesty International has urged Saudi Arabia to abandon what it termed a “bloody execution spree”, after reports that 14 more men are set to be executed.

The kingdom has already beheaded at least 66 people this year, the rights group said on Monday, as it decried the Saudi Arabian supreme court’s decision to uphold death sentences against the group convicted of crimes related to their involvement in protests, Al Jazeera reported.

Amnesty also said it learned on Sunday that the Specialized Criminal Court in Riyadh upheld the death sentences for 15 other men accused of spying for Iran.

In June 2016, the SCC sentenced to death the 14 men charged with crimes relating to protesting in what Amnesty says was a “grossly unfair mass trial”.

They were convicted of a wide array of crimes that include bomb making, theft, robbery, participation in riots and shooting at security vehicles, among others.

Court documents showed that the men claimed they had been tortured until they confessed to the allegations.

“By confirming these sentences, Saudi Arabia’s authorities have displayed their ruthless commitment to the use of the death penalty as a weapon to crush dissent and neutralize political opponents,” Samah Hadid, director of campaigns for the Middle East at Amnesty International, said in a statement.

“King Salman’s signature is now all that stands between them and their execution. He must immediately quash these death sentences which are a result of sham court proceedings that brazenly flout international fair trial standards.”

Amnesty added that Saudi authorities had executed at least 26 people over the past three and a half weeks —an average of more than one execution a day.

Meanwhile, as of Wednesday, the UK-based rights group Reprieve had obtained more than 32,000 signatures on a petition to cancel the executions.

Earlier this month, Reprieve lambasted Saudi Arabia for upholding a death sentence for 23-year-old Munir Adam, a partially deaf and blind man who was allegedly tortured into a confession.

Police are accused of torturing Adam, who was arrested during protests in 2012, until he lost all hearing in one ear, despite medical records proving his disabilities.

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