Amnesty calls on Saudi Arabia to halt execution of two Bahraini men

The human rights organization Amnesty International has called on Saudi Arabia to halt the execution of two Bahraini men convicted on terrorism-related charges.

This came in a statement published by the organization on its official website. 

The appeal of the international human rights organization relates to two Shiites from Bahrain, Jaafar Mohammad Sultan and Sadeq Majeed Thamer, who have been detained in Saudi Arabia since 2015.

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They were accused of terrorism and said to have smuggled explosives to Saudi Arabia and taken part in anti-government rallies in Bahrain. 

The Specialized Criminal Court sentenced them to death in October 2021 following a grossly unfair trial and the death sentences were upheld by the Appeals Court in April.

Lynn Maalouf, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Office at Amnesty International said, “The two men are at imminent risk of execution now that their sentences have been presented to the king for approval. They were sentenced after a deeply flawed trial based on torture-tainted confessions.”

In this context, Amnesty International said, Jaafar and Sadeq had no access to legal representation throughout their pre-trial detention and interrogations. According to court documents, they told the court that they were tortured and that their so-called confessions were extracted under duress.

The human rights organizations also urged Saudi authorities must order a prompt, impartial and independent investigation into the defendants’ claims of torture and ill-treatment.

The pace of executions in Saudi Arabia has accelerated since the beginning of the year, while the kingdom is witnessing an unprecedented campaign of social openness led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, accompanied by a crackdown on opponents.

The organization stated in its annual report on the death penalty on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia doubled executions in 2021 by carrying out 65 executions, compared to 27 in 2020. The conservative kingdom has carried out 120 death sentences since the beginning of 2022, including 81 executions in one day in March.

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