Saudi beheads two murderers

RIYADH, Jan 30, (AFP): Saudi Arabia beheaded two of its nationals on Wednesday after they were sentenced to death for separate murders, the interior ministry announced.
Marwan al-Balawi was convicted of stabbing to death another Saudi, Saif al-Wabsi, during a dispute in Medina in the northwest, said a statement published by the official SPA news agency.
SPA also reported that authorities have beheaded Hussein al-Yami for having shot dead Hamad al-Jaafar in the southwestern district of Najran.
The executions bring to nine the number of people beheaded in Saudi Arabia so far this year.
In 2012, the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom beheaded 76 people, according to an AFP tally based on official figures. The US-based Human Rights Watch put the number at 69.
Rape, murder, apostasy, armed robbery and drug trafficking are all punishable by death under Saudi Arabia’s strict version of sharia, or Islamic law.

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