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Saudi Arabia pardons convicts sentenced with ‘discretionary flogging’

November 25, 2020 at 10:14 am

Protesters simulate a flogging in front of the Saudi embassy in Washington, DC on 15 January 2015 [NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images]

Saudi Arabia has issued “supreme directives” to pardon all convicts found guilty of crimes that require “discretionary flogging”, local media reported yesterday.

Saudi Okaz newspaper said the pardon includes rulings issued prior to the Supreme Court’s decision to end “flogging” as a form of punishment.

Last May, the Saudi Minister of Justice and Chairman of the Supreme Judiciary Council Sheikh Walid Al-Samaani issued a circular to all courts across the kingdom to implement the Supreme Court’s decision to abolish flogging as a form of punishment.

The Supreme Court’s decision instructed all courts to pronounce jail term, fines or both as penalties as an alternative to flogging in line with the regulations issued by the higher authorities.

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