Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Reprieve: Executions doubled under King Salman

    6:30 AM   No comments

The human rights organization Reprieve, which opposes the death penalty, in cooperation with the European Saudi Organization for Human Rights, announced that execution rates in Saudi Arabia have doubled since King Salman came to power in the year 2015 and appointed his son Muhammad to prominent positions.

The death penalty rate in Saudi Arabia has doubled since Salman came to power in 2015 and appointed his son, Mohammed bin Salman, to prominent positions, according to the text of a report prepared by the “Reprieve” human rights organization against the death penalty, which documented, in cooperation with the European Saudi Organization for Human Rights, executions. Saudi Arabia accurately in order to issue a new report.

The report was titled, Saudi Arabia and the death penalty: Everything you need to know about the rise in executions under Mohammed bin Salman.

The results concluded, based on the data collected since 2010 through this organization, that the Saudi government has used the death penalty periodically to silence dissidents and demonstrators, which violates international human rights law, which stipulates that it should be used only in the most serious crimes. About eleven people who were arrested as boys were executed in 2015, despite repeated allegations by Saudi Arabia that it limits the use of the death penalty against minors and the spread of torture in Saudi prisons, even for accused boys.

Last year, Reprieve documented 147 executions in Saudi Arabia, but says the number could have been much higher. It also says the country has used the death penalty "disproportionately" against foreign nationals, including domestic servants and defendants in minor drug cases.

Muhammad bin Salman, who promised after assuming power to modernize the kingdom, and said in an interview in 2018 that his country seeks to “reduce” the use of the death penalty. However, Saudi Arabia is still one of the world’s most executed countries.

Maya Foa, director of Reprieve, said the Saudi crown prince did exactly the opposite of what he promised and oversaw a large number of executions and brutal repression of people who took part in pro-democracy protests.

Ali al-Dubaisi, director of the Berlin-based European Saudi Organization for Human Rights, says the death penalty is part of a Saudi legal system that is "intrinsically unfair".

The latest report issued by Human Rights Watch describes Saudi Arabia's record in the field of human rights as "unfortunate", and a disgrace, and that the kingdom is busy in efforts to distort that record by promoting sports and entertainment activities.

Sunday, January 22, 2023

The "double standard" of the British media... This is how London's lies were promoted before the invasion of Iraq

    7:40 AM   No comments

 The British "Declassified" website talked about the role of the British media in promoting the lies of the British government before the invasion of Iraq.

The site said that the British media repeated the government's lies and fabrications without scrutiny, and became part of the government's propaganda machine, before the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

He pointed out that the former British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, provided the British public with false information twenty years ago about the late Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's possession of weapons of mass destruction, in order to prove the case of the illegal invasion of Iraq.

He added that Blair was not tried yet, but was honored and given the "Rabat" medal, which is the highest honor in the British Kingdom, pointing out that the journalists who repeated his lies were not tried either, but rather climbed the ladder of the profession to its highest levels.

On the other hand, those who dared to expose the lies of the war, such as the Australian journalist Julian Assange, are now in prison.

According to the site, there were serious investigations into false reports about Iraq in the United States, while this was not the case in Britain, where the press and broadcast media became an advanced part of the government propaganda machine.

Likewise, senior British journalists reported uncritical lies about the British government, often adding new fabrications of their own, according to the site.

He added that the Guardian newspaper, for example, "swallowed" the Blair government's bogus claim that Saddam Hussein's agents were looking for uranium in Africa to buy a nuclear bomb.

Under the headline: "Iraq file: African gangs offer a path to uranium - the nuclear suspicion lies with the Congo and South Africa," the newspaper claimed that it had seen secret documents proving contacts between African militias and Baghdad.

The Observer was "more intelligent and creative on the pro-war case," looking for more interesting angles to prove actual or alleged Saddam Hussein's malevolence, such as a 1,560-word interview with a woman claiming to be a former lover of Saddam Hussein, whom she claimed was With Osama bin Laden as a guest in one of Saddam's palaces, and that Saddam was financing Osama.

In turn, the "Sunday Telegraph" newspaper pumped a huge amount of government propaganda, as it published sensational reports that fueled public anxiety on the eve of the war, according to the site.

On January 19, 2003, the newspaper claimed that UN weapons inspectors "discovered evidence that Saddam Hussein is trying to develop an arsenal of nuclear weapons." Indeed, when the weapons inspectors issued their verdict a few days later, they concluded no such thing.

Meanwhile, critics of the war were marginalized or vilified. The site pointed out that Scott Ritter, the United Nations weapons inspector, has repeatedly questioned the allegations of Britain and the United States about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction, stressing that the importance of his words were downplayed, while the narratives of the attack were reinforced.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

UN: 26 Rohingya refugees died at sea making perilous journey

    5:20 AM   No comments

 At least 26 Rohingya Muslims had died in dire conditions during a month at open sea while making a dangerous voyage that brought scores of others to safety in Indonesia, a U.N. agency said Tuesday, adding there will likely be more.

Exhausted women and children were among 185 people who disembarked from a rickety wooden boat on Monday in a coastal village in Aceh’s Pidie district, authorities said. A distressing video circulated widely on social media showed the Rohingya worn out and emaciated, with many crying for help.

“They are very weak because of dehydration and exhaustion after weeks at sea,” said local police chief Fauzi, who goes by a single name.

The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees said that survivors told the agency that 26 people died during the long journey.

One of the refugees, who identified himself as Rosyid, told The Associated Press that they left the refugee camp in Bangladesh at the end of November and drifted on the open sea. He said at least “20 of us died aboard due to high waves and sick, and their bodies were thrown into the sea.”

According to UNHR, more than 2,000 people are reported to have taken risky sea journeys in the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal this year, and nearly 200 have reportedly died.

UNHCR has also received unconfirmed reports of one additional boat with some 180 people still missing, with all passengers presumed dead.

Chris Lewa, the director of the Arakan Project, which works in support of Myanmar’s Rohingya, said the latest arrivals were among five groups of Rohingya who had left refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar district in Bangladesh by smaller boats to avoid detection by local coast guards before they were transferred onto five larger boats for their respective journeys.

Myanmar security forces have been accused of mass rapes, killings and burning of thousands of homes belonging to minority Rohingya Muslims, sending them fleeing to Bangladesh and onward.

Malaysia has been a common destination for many of the refugees arriving by boat, but they also have been detained in the country. Engine troubles make others seek safety in Aceh province in Indonesia, on the way to Malaysia.

UNHCR praised authorities and Indonesia’s local community who brought ashore more than 200 desperate Rohingya, many of whom were in need of urgent medical attention.

Indonesian fishermen and local authorities rescued and disembarked two groups, 58 on Sunday and 174 on Monday, said Ann Maymann, the UNHCR representative in Indonesia, “We welcome this act of humanity by local communities and authorities in Indonesia.”

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