Saudi beheads murderers, adding to ‘campaign of death’Share Tweet Saudi beheads murderers, adding to ‘campaign of death’

RIYADH: A day after Saudi Arabia carried out the 100th execution of year 2015, two more of its citizens were beheaded for murder on Tuesday.

According to a rights group, this adds to a “campaign of death” in which more than 100 people have been executed.

Mohammed al-Otaibi was convicted of shooting dead another Saudi, the interior ministry said in a statement on the official Saudi Press Agency.

Authorities carried out the sentence in Riyadh.

Separately, Turki al-Zahrani was put to death in the Muslim holy city of Mecca for stabbing dead a fellow Saudi, the ministry said.

The two cases brought to 102 the number of Saudi nationals and foreigners executed in the kingdom this year.

Read: Saudi Arabia beheads 100th person this year

That compares with 87 for all of 2014, according to AFP tallies, but is still far below the record 192 which rights group Amnesty International said took place in 1995.

“Saudi authorities have been on a campaign of death this year, executing more people in six months than all of the previous year,” Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director of Human Rights Watch, said in a statement on Tuesday.

Echoing the concerns of other activists, the New York-based group said it has documented “due process violations” in Saudi Arabia’s judiciary that make it difficult for defendants to get fair trials even in capital cases.

Read: Difference is clear: Saudi executions judicial while IS beheadings are arbitrary, says Saudi official

Under the conservative kingdom’s strict Islamic sharia legal code, drug trafficking, rape, murder, armed robbery and apostasy are all punishable by death.

The interior ministry has cited deterrence as a reason for carrying out the punishment.