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Affront to Justice: Who are the people being executed in Saudi Arabia?

31st October 2008, 13:09:39 UTC

The rate of executions in Saudi Arabia has risen sharply in the last two years. There were at least 158 executions in the country in 2007, a fourfold increase from 2006, and at least 66 people were executed in the first six months of 2008. Death sentences are often imposed at the end of a largely secret and grossly unfair trial process that causes great suffering not only to those condemned but also to their families. Many of the defendants – scores of whom are executed – are sentenced after being convicted of non-violent or vaguely worded offences. They receive summary trials and often have no lawyer to defend them and almost no protection against miscarriage of justice. Those who are executed are usually beheaded, often in public.

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