It’s a bloody shame – Saudi Arabian authorities can’t find swordsmen to behead the baddies

Want to get ahead?

Brush up on your skills with a sword, then offer your services to the Saudi Arabian Government.

That government is considering dropping public beheadings as a method of execution (see here) because of a shortage of government swordsmen.

The shortage is of swordsmen, it should be noted, presumably because Saudi womenfolk are not too skilled with a sword, and even if they were skilled, their burqas would impede their work as executioners.

Getting rid of beheadings would be a bit of a shame, but some other means of execution is sure to be found in a country that is quite keen on getting rid of its bad buggers permanently. This is much smarter than locking them up for a while, then releasing them.

It looks like firing squads could be the chosen way of despatching of the country’s undesirables.

A joint Saudi committee composed of representatives of the ministries of interior, justice and health has instead proposed firing squads for capital sentences.

The committee argued that the measure, if adopted, would not violate Islamic law, allowing heads – or emirs – of the country’s 13 local administrative regions to begin using the new method when needed.

News if this has reached the Daily Mail via The Daily Mirror in Sri Lanka, which has reported a statement from the committee:

‘This solution seems practical, especially in light of shortages in official swordsmen or their belated arrival to execution yards in some incidents; the aim is to avoid interruption of the regularly-taken security arrangements.’

So how many bad buggers were beheaded last year?

Alf remains uncertain.

The tally was 76, according to an AFP tally based on official figures. Human Rights Watch put the number at 69.

But the criminal justice system in that country has a lot going for it, because rape, murder, apostasy, armed robbery and drug trafficking are all punishable by death under Saudi Arabia’s strict version of Sharia, or Islamic Law.

This should be nobody’s else’s business.

But there are lots of pantywaists around the world, and –

Death by beheading has always been a source of tension between Saudi Arabia and the international community.

There was international outcry, including from human rights groups, after a Sri Lankan maid, Rizana Nafeek, was beheaded in public by sword last month.

Miss Nafeek was sentenced to death aged 17 in 2007 after her Saudi employer accused her of strangling his four-month-old baby two years earlier after a dispute with the child’s mother.

The case apparently soured the kingdom’s diplomatic relations with Sri Lanka, which has recalled its ambassador to Saudi Arabia in protest.

The UN’s main human rights body expressed ‘deep dismay’ at the beheading, while the European Union said it had asked Saudi authorities to commute the death penalty.

But the authorities in Riyadh rejected the statements as ‘external interference’ in its domestic affairs, just as – Alf trusts – we would do if anybody took issue, say, with our car-crushing laws.


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