Beheading 37, pinning dead bodies to poles: Saudi Arabia shocks the world with mass execution

Among the executed 37, majority were Shia.

Executing 37 people and pinning their dead bodies to poles, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has shocked the world with their mass scale execution, probably the most barbaric incident after Khashoggi’s killing.

Human Rights Watch, absolutely horrified by the largest mass execution in three years, described the punishments as ‘grotesque’ and called it as ‘the day we feared’. The Kingdom’s news agency has called it a necessary action to clamp ‘terrorism’ because the executed were “adopting extremist terrorist ideologies and forming terrorist cells to corrupt and disrupt security as well as spread chaos and provoke sectarian strife.”

According to the interior ministry, the ones executed were found guilty of attacking security installations with explosives and killing a number of security officers. After beheading, two dead bodies were also pinned to the poles as a warning to others.

Among the executed, the majority belonged to Shia sect, which rose grave concerns regarding the minority rights and prevailing sectarian discrimination in the Kingdom. Human Rights Watch expressed the reservations and condemned it.

“Today’s mass execution of mostly Shia citizens is a day we have feared for several years. The punishments are especially grotesque when they result from a flawed justice system that ignores torture allegations,” said Adam Coogle, Middle East researcher at HRW.


Amnesty said that it is another incident that shows the Kingdom is using the death penalty as a tool against its Shia population.
“It is also yet another gruesome indication of how the death penalty is being used as a political tool to crush dissent from within the country’s Shia minority” – said  Lynn Maalouf, Amnesty International’s Middle East Research Director, speaking to The Independent. 
“The use of the death penalty is always appalling but it is even more shocking when it is applied after unfair trials or against people who were under 18 at the time of the crime, in flagrant violation of international law” – she further added, speaking to the said source.

Kingdom’s Shia population, that makes about 10-15% of the total, have often voiced their concerns regarding the discrimination they face. 

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