Outrage as Saudi Arabia executes 81 convicts in one day – Ripples Nigeria

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The international community was thrown into shock on Saturday as Saudi Arabia executed 81 convicts in one day, including seven Yemenis and one Syrian national, on charges of “allegiance to foreign terrorist organisations” and holding “deviant beliefs”, according to state news agency, Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
The executed men, according to the SPA, included 37 Saudi nationals who were found guilty in a single case for attempting to assassinate security officers and targeting police stations and convoys.
The exercise has been described as the largest known mass execution carried out in the kingdom in its modern history, with the number dwarfing the 67 executions carried out in 2021 and 27 in 2020.
A statement from the Kingdom’s Interior Ministry on Sunday which justified the executions, said the executed “individuals were convicted of various crimes including murdering innocent men, women and children.”
“Crimes committed by these individuals also include pledging allegiance to foreign terrorist organisations, such as ISIS [ISIL], al-Qaeda and the Houthis.
Read also: Saudi Arabia suspends flights from Nigeria over new COVID-19 variant
“Some travelled to conflict zones to join terrorist organisations.
“The accused were provided with the right to an attorney and were guaranteed their full rights under Saudi law during the judicial process.
“The Kingdom will continue to take a strict and unwavering stance against terrorism and extremist ideologies that threaten the stability of the entire world,” the statement added.
The Saudi government has continued to face strong criticism of its restrictive laws on political and religious expression, and the implementation of the death penalty, including for defendants arrested when they were minors.
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