Witch Hunts In The News

Man Beheaded For “Witchcraft” In Saudi Arabia

A Sudanese man has been beheaded in Saudi Arabia after being accused of sorcery and witchcraft, the country’s interior ministry confirmed on Monday.

The man, Abdul Hamid bin Hussein Mostafa al-Fakki, had been arrested in 2005 and charged with “witchcraft” two years later. He was sentenced to death in the western city of Medina after being found guilty of what the court said was “producing a spell designed to lead to the reconciliation of his client’s divorced parents.”

Details of the case have been largely muted, but international organizations had been calling for the man to be set free and not executed. Their efforts failed.

Amnesty International had tried unsuccessfully to prevent the execution of al-Fakki, who lived as a migrant worker in the Gulf Kingdom.

The crime of “sorcery” is not clearly defined in Saudi Arabian law, according to the London-based human rights group.

At least 43 people have already been executed in Saudi Arabia this year, making it one of the leading country’s in the world to use the death penalty.

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