Saudi Arabia to human rights: no thank you

The BBC has a story on Raif.

Raif Badawi, 31, was flogged 50 times last week and has been told he will receive another 50 lashes on Friday.

His wife Ensaf Haidar, who has sought asylum in Canada, noted that Western powers had condemned the punishment.

But she said she would like them to “do more” for Badawi by appealing to the Saudi government directly to free him.

The Gulf kingdom has so far not responded publicly to the protests.

They’re busy. So many liberals and infidels to whip.

Haidar praised the criticism of the flogging by the governments of the US, Canada, Germany and Norway and others, but said she wanted them to put further pressure on the Saudi government.

“I would like the Western governments to do more. I would like them to ask the Saudi government directly for his release, not just issue statements of condemnation.”

On Wednesday, Canada’s foreign minister appealed for clemency.

“This punishment is a violation of human dignity and freedom of expression,” John Baird said in a statement.

And a violation of many clauses of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including the ones that touch on human dignity and freedom of expression. But then that doesn’t matter because guess what, Saudi Arabia is not a signatory.

Most Muslim-majority countries including Egypt, Iran and Pakistan signed the UDHR in 1948, but crucially Saudi Arabia, where the King must comply with Shari’a and the Qur’an, did not sign the declaration, arguing that it violated Islamic law and criticising it for failing to take into consideration the cultural and religious context of non-Western countries. Saudi Arabian law is completely at odds with the UDHR as all citizens are required to be Muslim. Therefore, non-Muslims risk everything from arrest to torture and the death penalty for their beliefs.

That’s MA student Jonathan Russell at the LSE blog in 2012; he was working as an intern at Quilliam.


  1. Crimson Clupeidae says

    Well, imaginary friend rights clearly trump real, actual, people rights.

    Therefore, they couldn’t sign the Declaration.

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