Human rights group Amnesty International is speaking out against Saudi Arabia for allegedly sentencing a man to be paralyzed. The man facing the shocking sentence has been identified as 24-year-old Ali Al-Khawahir.
Al-Khawahir has spent the last 10 years of his life in prison for stabbing his friend in the back. The wound left his friend paralyzed. The Saudi Gazette reports Saudi authorities will paralyze Al-Khawahir if he cannot pay the victim one million Saudi Riyals, or $266,000, in damages. Amnesty International Middle East and North Africa deputy director Ann Harrison called the punishment “torture.”
"Paralyzing someone as punishment for a crime would be torture. That such a punishment might be implemented is utterly shocking, even in a context where flogging is frequently imposed as a punishment for some offenses, as happens in Saudi Arabia,” Harrison said.
The “eye for an eye” mentality is not uncommon in Saudi court cases. Harrison notes that “other sentences passed have included eye-gouging, tooth extraction, and death in cases of murder.”
The Saudi Justice Ministry has not commented.
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