Aiming to ‘correct’ its image, Saudi abolishes death penalty for minors, outlaws flogging

Riyadh

The infamous ‘Chop-Chop square’ that has been popularized by various Bollywood movies may soon be a thing of the past. King Salman of Saudi Arabia on Sunday has ordered an end to death penalty meted out to minors and has ordered the ending of the dreaded practice of flogging.

King Salman’s order to end death penalties to minors has been welcomed by many human rights activists.

Previously, minors had a maximum jail term of 10 years except in those cases which were punishable by death.

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Now, no minor shall not be hanged for any crime that they commit. They shall be liable to face an imprisonment of a maximum term of 10 years, except for crimes related to terrorism.

Terrorism shall be dealt with differently. The law is being worked out.

The dreaded practice of flogging has also been done away with by the Supreme Court of Saudi Arabia.

These offences have been replaced with stiff fines and longer prison terms.

This is largely being seen as an effort of the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman who has been taking many efforts to modernize the conservative kingdom which implements the puritan form of Islam termed as Wahabism.

The Crown Prince has been trying to attract FDI and open up various sectors of the economy including tourism, as crude oil prices continue to fall.

The brutal killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018 in Istanbul had sparked massive criticism against the kingdom and its policies.

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