Saudi Arabia Abolishes Flogging as a Punishment

Published: April 29, 2020

The Supreme Court of Saudi Arabia recently abolished flogging as a punishment in the country. This is seen as the latest in a series of measures to reform the orthodox government.

Flogging in Saudi Arabia

The Supreme Court of Saudi Arabia had recently done away with flogging as a mode of punishment. The controversial public punishment method is to be replaced with fines, jail times and community service. The Saudi courts had previously ordered such public whipping of convicts for offences ranging from breach of peace to murder.

Raif Badawi

Raif Badawi is a Saudi writer and activist. His case in early 2010s is one of the most high profile instances of flogging. He was punished for blogging about free speech and apostasy (insulting Islamism). He was first sentenced to 7 years in prison and 600 lashes in 2012 but the punishment was increased in 2014 to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes.

Death Penalty

The death penalty for minors is another one of Saudi Arabia’s controversial punishments. The country’s King Salman had ordered an end to death penalty for minors by a royal decree. In 2018, the king had set a maximum prison term of 10 years for minors convicted for certain crimes, except those punished with death sentence. Now the 10 year limit will apply to all crimes by minors with the exception of terrorism-related crimes.

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