Saudi Arabia executes 47 people, Shia Leader Included
File photo of , in , Saudi Arabia, where public executions are carried out under Sharia Law; Saudi officials said the 47 people executed were not executed publicly, but rather within prisons.
Yesterday,officials said they have executed 47 people whom courts convicted as terrorists.
Officials said the executions were not done in public. Saudi cleric Grand Muftiin justifying the executions cited Saudi Arabia's interpretation of and said the executions prevented the accused from committing further crime, calling it a form of "mercy".
Some of those executed were reportedlymilitants behind terrorist attacks. Before the executions, an Al-Qaeda branch from threatened Saudi authorities with violence if they executed their members.
Among those executed was acleric who criticized both the and that of ; he condemned 's suppression of protests with Saudi aid. He reportedly avoided advocating violence. He was convicted of causing violence against authorities, and a Saudi court rejected his appeal of his conviction this past year. His execution led to condemnation from Iranian officials, who had previously said it "would cost Saudi Arabia dearly".
When news broke the 47 were to be executed, in November, regionaldirector James Lynch said Saudi Arabia was settling "political scores" under "the guise of counter-terrorism."
The organization said at least 150 people have been executed in Saudi Arabia in 2015, while 90 were executed a year ago in 2014.
- Reuters. "Saudi Arabia executes 47 people in one day including Shia cleric" — , January 2, 2016
- AP. "Saudi Arabia executes 47 prisoners, including opposition Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr" — , January 2, 2016