An Imminent Beheading

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The Gad About Town

The United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights released a statement Tuesday night urging Saudi Arabia to halt the execution of ‪Ali Mohammed al-Nimr‬ because he was “convicted for a crime reportedly committed as a child.” It is rare that a specific person’s specific case be the subject of such a statement.

The statement reads, “Any judgment imposing the death penalty upon persons who were children at the time of the offence, and their execution, are incompatible with Saudi Arabia’s international obligations.” It reminds Saudi Arabia that it is a party to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Because Ali’s trial was conducted unfairly, the UN OHCHR argues, “International law, accepted as binding by Saudi Arabia, provides that capital punishment may only be imposed following trials that comply with the most stringent requirements of fair trial and due process, or could otherwise be considered…

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