Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Website Editor Sentenced To Seven Years Prison And 600 Lashes In Saudi Arabia
The editor of a Saudi Arabian social website, Raif Badawi has been sentenced to seven years in prison and 600 lashes for founding an Internet forum that violates Islamic values and propagates liberal thoughts, rteported Saudi media. Badawi, who started " Free Saudi Liberals" website to discuss role of religion in Saudi Arabia, has been held since June 2012, on chasrges of cyber crimes and disobeying his father---a crime in the Kingdom. Al Watan newspaper said the judge has also ordered the closure of the website. Badawi website included articles that were critical of senior religious figures like Grand Mufti. It was also said in December that Badawi faced a possible death sentence after a judge cited him for apostay but, AlWatan said judge dropped the apostay charges. Apostasy, an act of changing religious affiliation carries an automatic death sentence in SDaudi Arabia. along with other crimes includimg blsasphemy. Badawi's wife denied her husband had expressed repentance before the judge on Monday in Jedda. The judge asked Raif, " Are you a Muslim" and he said yes, and "I do not accept anyoine to cast doubt on my belief" she wrote on Twitter.