Saudi Arabia upholds sentence against blogger

Saudi Arabia upholds sentence against blogger
Raif Badawi who is suffering from ill health will serve the rest of his sentence despite the international outcry against it.
2 min read
08 June, 2015
Badawi is diabetic and suffering from malnutrition and poor health [AFP]

Saudi Arabia's supreme court has upheld a sentence of ten years in jail and 1,000 lashes against blogger Raif Badawi on charges of insulting Islam, his wife said Sunday.

The judgement came despite worldwide outrage over his case and criticism from the UN, US, EU, Canada and others.

"This is a final decision that is irrevocable. It has shocked me," his wife, Ensaf Haidar, told AFP in a telephone interview from Canada.

Badawi received the first 50 of the 1,000 lashes he was sentenced to outside a mosque in the Red Sea city of Jeddah on 9 January. Subsequent lashes were postponed on medical grounds.

His wife expressed fear the Saudi's could begin carrying out the rest of his flogging sentence next week, especially due to Badawi's health condition.

Haidar had previously said her husband is diabetic, and has suffered from malnutrition and poor health while in prison.

Faisal Alkhaldi was retweeted on @raif_badawi twitter account saying: "If Raif Badawi is awarded the Nobel Prize he's been nominated for we'll become a historic farce. The only Saudi to win a Nobel Prise would be a citizen jailed for his pen."

On Raif Badawi's Facebook page, his wife wrote in English: "Finally my husband is more dangerous than ISIS in Saudi officials' eyes!"

Badawi co-founded the Saudi Liberal Network Internet discussion group.

He was arrested in June 2012 under cyber-crime provisions, and a judge ordered the website to be closed down after it criticised Saudi Arabia's notorious religious police