Shariah rule ‘sovereign Saudi right’

Bandar Al-Aiban
Bandar Al-Aiban

Bandar Al-Aiban

It is Saudi Arabia’s sovereign right to implement Shariah law, said Bandar Al-Aiban, president of the Human Rights Commission.

Addressing the 28th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on Wednesday, he said capital punishment is imposed on murderers to protect society.

“Our judicial system protects the rights of criminals and their victims,” he said. “(Since) Saudi Arabia’s rules and regulations are based on Shariah, (they) safeguard rights of all parties and ensure justice.”

Al-Aiban said under the Kingdom’s judicial system, capital punishment is awarded to “only those who commit heinous crimes that threaten security.”

He said the system is foolproof in that such verdicts are ratified by no less than 13 judges.

Al-Aiban reaffirmed Saudi Arabia’s determination to establish the highest standards of justice and ensure fair trial for all defendants. “Our judicial system conforms to international charters and agreements,” he said.

“We should not ignore the rights of those who are killed while calling for the annulment of capital punishment,” Al-Aiban told the gathering as head of the Saudi delegation.

“There are many countries that apply capital punishment in accordance with their rules and regulations and there is no international consensus on the issue,” Al-Aiban pointed out.

Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Secretary General Iyad Madani also addressed the Geneva meeting. He urged the council to accord top priority to legislation that will help prevent religious bigotry and violence.

“We should have the courage to discuss the limit of the freedom of expression, especially when it is misused to incite religious discrimination,” the OIC chief said, while calling for an international law to prevent actions that promote hatred among the various faith communities.


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