Saudi Sentences Man To 2,000 Lashes And 10 Years In Prison For Being Atheist

Saudi Sentences Man To 2,000 Lashes And 10 Years In Prison For Being Atheist

A court in Saudi Arabia has recently ruled that terrorism can now be defined as “calling for atheist thought in any form” and this development has sentenced a man to 10 years in prison and 2,000 lashes for expressing his atheist beliefs on social media sites. The 28-year-old has admitted to being an atheist but refused to repent, claiming that what he wrote were his personal beliefs and that he mistakenly believed he had the right to express his views about it.

‘Religious police’ in charge of monitoring social networks found more than 600 tweets denying any existence of God, ridiculing the Quranic verses, accusing all prophets of lies and saying their teaching fuelled hostilities. With a long list of royal decrees and an overarching new piece of legislation to deal with such forms of terrorism, King Abdullah attempted to clamp down on all forms of political dissent and protests that could “harm public order”. It is said on the Article 1 of the new provisions defined terrorism as “calling for atheist thought in any form, or calling into question the fundamentals of the Islamic religion on which this country is based”.

Joe Stork, deputy Middle East and North Africa director of Human Rights Watch even stated that:
 “Saudi authorities have never tolerated criticism of their policies, but these recent laws and regulations turn almost any critical expression or independent association into crimes of terrorism."
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