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Saudi liberal blogger sentenced to 600 lashes and seven years in jail

A Saudi activist is being punished after calling for a "day of liberalism"

30 Jul 2013
BY PADRAIG REIDY

raif-badawiRaif Badawi, founder of the Free Saudi Liberals site, has been sentenced to seven years in jail and 600 lashes by a Jeddah court, according to a tweet from his lawyer Waleed Abu Alkhair yesterday

Badawi’s wife Ensaf Haidar, who now lives in Lebanon, confirmed the sentence to CNN’s Mohammed Jamjoom.

 

Badawi was arrested in June 2012 for “insulting Islam through electronic channels”. Abualkhair said the conviction was connected to charges of “insulting the religious police” and ridiculing religious figures in the kingdom.

In January, a court had refused to hear apostasy charges against Badawi, concluding that there was no case. Apostasy carries the death sentence in Saudi Arabia.

Among evidence against Badawi was an allegation that he had “liked” an Arab Christian page on Facebook. His lawyer believes he was pursued after calling for a “day of liberalism” in May 2012.

The court has also ordered that Badawi’s website be shut down.

Padraig Reidy

Padraig Reidy

Padraig Reidy is the editor of Little Atoms and a columnist for Index on Censorship. He has also written for The Observer, The Guardian, and The Irish Times.
Padraig Reidy

3 responses to “Saudi liberal blogger sentenced to 600 lashes and seven years in jail”

  1. Feisal says:

    This is barbaric. What are human right activists up to?

  2. Andrew Wilson says:

    This is very sad in 2013 – please stop this inhumane and barbaric act

  3. Ed Jones says:

    http://www.councilofexmuslims.com – I am not affiliated with this website in any way, but many times I have seen closet apostates over the moon that they have finally found a place where they can talk to other ex-Muslims without the fear of being ostracized or even harmed.