Sunday 25 September 2016

Saudi teen to be crucified for involvement in anti-Government protest

David Kearns

Published 18/09/2015 | 15:29

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr was 17-years-old when he was arrested Credit: Free Sheikh Nimr Baqir Al-Nimr
Ali Mohammed al-Nimr was 17-years-old when he was arrested Credit: Free Sheikh Nimr Baqir Al-Nimr

A prisoner in Saudi Arabia who was arrested when he was 17 years old faces ‘death by crucifixion’ after a court dismissed his final appeal.

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Ali Mohammed al-Nimr was arrested in February 2012 and accused of taking part in anti-government protests and illegally possessing firearms.

He was sentenced to death by crucifixion in 2014 following a signed confession that came after a court had failed to prove the charges against him.

His sentence is due to be carried out by beheading and crucifixion, a method that involves removing the head of the prisoner and tying their headless body to a cross.

According to human rights groups, the case against the now 20-year-old Mr Al-Nimr hinges on his family connection to Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, a 53-year-old critic of the Saudi regime, and the teen’s uncle.

The elder Mr al-Nimr is scheduled to be executed by crucifixion this week and activists fear the younger Mr al-Nimr will be executed shortly afterwards.

Activists calling for the release of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr Credit: Free Sheikh Nimr Baqir Al-Nimr
Activists calling for the release of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr Credit: Free Sheikh Nimr Baqir Al-Nimr

According to Amnesty International, the last time Saudi Arabia beheaded and crucified a prisoner it was in 2013.

“Five Yemeni men were beheaded and crucified, with pictures emerging on social media showing five decapitated bodies hanging from a horizontal pole with their heads wrapped in bags,” the group said.

“The beheading and ‘crucifixion’ took place in front of the University of Jizan where students were taking exams.”

More than 2000 have been put to death in Saudi Arabia in the last 20 years.

Recently international pressure has been applied to free blogger Raif Badawi, who given a 10 years sentence for starting a website for social and political debate in Saudi Arabia.

The prosecution first called for him to be tried for apostasy, which carries a death sentence in Saudi Arabia.

Then, in May of this year, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1000 lashes.

The blogger will receive 50 lashings a week for a year, the court ruled.

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