Saudi Arabia’s abolition of death penalty for minors welcomed

Saudi Arabia’s abolition of death penalty for minors welcomed

Dr. Awwad Al-Awwad, president of the Human Rights Commission. (Supplied)
Updated 28 April 2020
  • The new decision means that any individual facing the death penalty for crimes committed while he or she was a minor no longer faces execution

JEDDAH: A recent decision by the Saudi Supreme Court to effectively end the death penalty for individuals convicted of crimes committed while they were minors has been hailed as an “important day” for the Kingdom’s judicial history.

The decision came just days after Saudi Arabia abolished flogging as a form of a judicial sentence.

Dr. Awwad Al-Awwad, president of the Human Rights Commission, welcomed the royal decree ending the death penalty for minors.

In a statement issued on Sunday, he said this decision helps the Kingdom establish “a more modern penal code and demonstrates  its commitment to following through on key reforms.”

“This is an important day for Saudi Arabia made possible by King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman,” Al-Awwad said.

This is an important day for Saudi Arabia made possible by King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Dr. Awwad Al-Awwad, President of Human Rights Commission

Praising the judicial reforms, he said these decisions show how Saudi Arabia is moving ahead in introducing human rights reforms even amid the ongoing crisis due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak.

The new decision means that any individual facing the death penalty for crimes committed while he or she was a minor no longer faces execution. Instead, the individual will receive a prison sentence of no longer than 10 years in a juvenile detention facility. “More reforms will be coming,” Al-Awwad said. – Arab News, 28/4/2020