Young Activist in Saudi Arabia Sentenced to Crucifixion

Ali Mohammed Al Nimr was just 17-years-old when he was arrested by Saudi Arabian authorities. Taken away for participating in anti-government protests he was imprisoned and, according to human rights groups, denied a lawyer and tortured until he gave a confession. Now the world is reacting in shock as Nimr’s last appeal, an appeal he wasn’t even invited to, has been denied and he faces down one of the most horrific punishments in the world: death by beheading and crucifixion.

According to Reprieve, Nimr was accused of, “‘explaining how to give first aid to protestors’ and using his blackberry to invite others to join him at the protest.” He was also accused of illegally possessing a firearm, although so far there hasn’t been any evidence to support that charge.

Many have speculated that his ties to his grandfather are a reason for the harsh sentence. Ali Nimr’s grandfather, Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, is a Shia anti-government activist who organized and participated in the 2011 protests, when Saudi Arabia brutally put down Shia-led uprisings in neighboring Bahrain. Sheikh Nimr was shot and arrested in 2012, which resulted in demonstrations in the eastern part of Saudi Arabia. Sheikh Nimr is also sentenced to death.

Many took to social media to protest the outrageous verdict of “death by crucifixion” which is seen by many as an ancient and barbaric practice. However, the last time Saudi Arabia actually used crucifixion was in 2013, when the kingdom beheaded and crucified five Yemeni men. The bodies were displayed outside of a local university in the city of Jizan, while students were inside taking exams. When pictures of the bodies emerged on social media, there was a large international outcry and Saudi Arabia had seemingly shelved the practice.

Yet the plan to publicly display the body of 21-year-old Nimr is a clear sign that Saudi Arabia’s use of this heinous practice is ramping back up.

This comes on the heels of Saudi Arabia being handed the chair position on the UN Human Rights Council. Although the UN has stated that this appointment occurred months ago, the move has still caused an uproar around the world, with prominent human rights organizations expressing outrage that Saudi Arabia could head such a venture.

Saudi Arabia’s latest king, although still quite new, has already weathered a number of scandals that have shaken the kingdom’s credibility. The imprisonment and sentencing of 1,000 lashes to blogger Raif Badawi has been an ongoing issue for free speech advocates. And human rights workers also note that the number of those executed in the kingdom this year – around 134 by best estimates – already exceeds last years total by 44. Among those killed are children and the disabled.

Many are worried that Ali Nimr will be executed at any moment and have taken to using the hashtag #FreeNimr to keep abreast of any news. Facebook pages have also been set up to support Ali and his grandfather.

It is outrageous that Saudi Arabia would incarcerate a child and sentence him to death by crucifixion. However, that the country is being rewarded with prestigious seats within the United Nations just shows how it is allowed to function on the international stage with absolute impunity.

Photo Credit: Al Nimr Team/Facebook

136 comments

Jack Y
Jack Y4 months ago

thanks

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Jack Y
Jack Y4 months ago

thanks

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John J
John J4 months ago

thanks for sharing

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John J
John J4 months ago

thanks for sharing

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Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus3 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Jim Ven
Jim Ven3 years ago

thanks for the article.

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Roberto Meritoni
Roberto Meritoni3 years ago

THANKS FOR SHARING

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SJ A.
Past Member 3 years ago

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/it-it/859/705/664/free-ali-mohammed-al-nimr-facing-death-by-crucifixion-and-beheading-in-saudi-arabia/

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Julia W.
Julia W3 years ago

Heart rending.

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holly masih
.3 years ago

I don' see a petition...someone mentioned one,but I am sorry.I am not seeing It ??????????????????????????????????

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