Badawi May Now Face the Death Penalty

After a few weeks of relatively encouraging signs that perhaps Saudi Arabia might show some leniency to atheist blogger Raif Badawi, things have taken a dramatic turn for the worse. His wife has been informed that they may reopen apostasy charges against him, which would carry the death penalty.

Raif Badawi, the Saudi Arabian blogger whose punishment of 1,000 lashes has prompted international condemnation, may now face the death penalty.

Mr Badawi’s wife, Ensaf Haidar, told The Independent in a series of messages that judges in Saudi Arabia’s criminal court want him to undergo a re-trial for apostasy. If found guilty, he would face a death sentence.

She said the “dangerous information” had come from “official sources” inside the conservative kingdom, where Mr Badawi has already been sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes – administered at a rate of 50 per week – for criticising the country’s clerics through his liberal blog.

After the first 50 lashes, the Saudis have repeatedly postponed any other beatings, which were scheduled to take place every Friday. That had offered some hope that perhaps the Saudi government was considering suspending the sentence, but this new development changes everything. Let’s hope that this does not happen.

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  • http://www.thelosersleague.com theschwa

    When ISIS starts selling us sufficient quantities of oil at an agreeable price, their killings will cease to be atrocities, right?

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Imagine how monstrous actions like this would be if Saudi Arabia wasn’t an ally.

  • eric

    AIUI the judge who originally tried him wanted to charge him with apostacy and issue an execution command the first time around, but he couldn’t for some technicality which has now disappeared. So the judge himself is requesting a retrial for the purposes of handing down a heavier punishment/ruling. What an impartial system.

  • zenlike

    Funny you would mention ISIS theschwa. Some time ago, ISIS posted some laws they would enact in their territories. Of course much outrage about how barbaric these laws are by our leaders. Someone posted an infograph which was not widely published in our free press showing that Saudi Arabia’s laws and related punishments don’t differ that much from the one’s enacted by ISIS.

    But I’m sure our esteemed leaders and guardians of democracy will call Saudi Arabia’s actions barbaric in the most harsh wordings, right?

  • laurentweppe

    When ISIS starts selling us sufficient quantities of oil at an agreeable price, their killings will cease to be atrocities, right?

    It’s already doing that: it will need to learn to murder only locals and stop beheading white people for the Western world (or at least its right-wingers) to start tolerating it

  • http://www.ranum.com Marcus Ranum

    When ISIS starts selling us sufficient quantities of oil at an agreeable price, their killings will cease to be atrocities, right?

    The bombing campaign’s kickoff had nothing to do with ISIS’ brief take-over of the oil wells. Honest. It’s just a coincidence.