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

Published: February 3, 2015
Saudi Arabia's Interior Ministry spokesperson Mansour Turki gestures during a news conference in Riyadh March 24, 2013. PHOTO: REUTERS

Saudi Arabia's Interior Ministry spokesperson Mansour Turki gestures during a news conference in Riyadh March 24, 2013. PHOTO: REUTERS

Days after the Islamic State (IS) executed Japanese journalist Kenji Goto and criticism arose in the near identical manner in which the militant group and the Saudi Arabia carry out capital punishments, a top official for the Arabian kingdom defended its justice system.

The Saudi official claimed executions and beheadings it carries out can not be compared with those committed by IS, since the death penalty awarded in the kingdom is based on a court decision.

In an interview with NBC News, Interior Ministry spokesperson Major General Mansour alTurki said the executions carried out by IS are ‘arbitrary.’

Middle East Eye, a website that focuses on news from the region, compared legal punishments recently announced by the Islamic State with the punishments for corresponding crimes in Saudi Arabia.

RELATED POST: Punisher-in-chiefs: How different are ISIS and Saudi Arabia really?

However, the spokesperson defended Saudi Arabia’s punishments.

“ISIS has no legitimate way to decide to decide to kill people,” he said, adding, “the difference is clear.”

“When you kill somebody without legitimate basis, without justice system, without court, that is still a crime whether you behead them or kill [them] with a gun,” alTurki said, referring to IS executions.

The spokesperson further said, “When we do it in Saudi Arabia we do it as a decision made by a court,” he said. “The killing is a decision, I mean it is not based on arbitrary choices, to kill this and not to kill this.”

Saudi Arabia has been increasingly concerned about IS’ expansion and is reportedly building a 600-mile long “Great Wall,” to keep the Islamic State out of its borders.

Saudi Arabia had on Sunday beheaded a convicted murderer, bringing to five the number of people executed since new King Salman took office, continuing the kingdom’s use of the harshest punishment.

RELATED POST: Saudi beheads murderer, 5th execution under new king

According to an AFP tally, 17 locals and foreigners have been executed in the kingdom this year.

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Reader Comments (8)

  • Rasika
    Feb 3, 2015 - 9:13PM

    That is innovative. Assertion by definition. Never mind if the international community accepts it or not. But where is that something called mercy in all this? and justice too.


  • Whiskey Khan
    Feb 3, 2015 - 9:13PM

    Never the less your punishment is still Barbaric, With all the wealth and resources you still failed to civilize your Kingdom.


  • normskyy
    Feb 3, 2015 - 9:30PM

    Barbaric is the shooting of around 100 people in the provincial capital of Lahore with nobody to be held responsible for it.

    Saudi is far from perfect but one thing they do have is a very safe society and I would pretty much guarantee their judges are not as corrupt as those in the subcontinent.

    Any Saudi citizen can petition the local ruling family member and have their issues dealt with immediately. For Saudis the system works…however, minorities of workers from across the globe are treated like slaves and animals. Compare this to Pakistan where the citizens of the country are treated like rubbish.

    In conclusion for Saudi people they have justice, education, security, health and clean water – Pakistan has none of the above.


  • goggi (Lahore)
    Feb 3, 2015 - 10:09PM

    The brutality and beastliness to behead or lapidate living humans is the gift of Arab Prophets!


  • Wizarat
    Feb 3, 2015 - 10:10PM

    It is only a matter of time when the chicken would come home to roost.

    The king and all his henchmen (prince and princess) would move West just like PML N Nawaz and Shahbaz Sharifs and the Zardaris.


  • Whiskey Khan
    Feb 3, 2015 - 10:49PM

    @ Normskyy….Agreed, Pakistan and Saudia Arabia are two sides of the same coin.


  • Azi
    Feb 4, 2015 - 12:34AM

    And the so called judicial process that suspects go through? One where suspects have no right to lawyer or trial, where they are taken to court only to be given the sentence? How would you feel when you are beaten into a false confession and given no way out, mr. Official?


  • Asif
    Feb 4, 2015 - 7:42AM

    @normskyy: Very clear from Raif Badawi’s 1000 lashing as how much Justice is available in the Kingdom. You have some nerves to speak about the school killings in Pakistan. It is the barbaric version of Saudi kings and their fellowmen that has poisoned the minds of simple Muslims through Saudi backed madarsa’s to an extent that they are now willing to kill their own blood. Do remember that blood of all killed in Syria, Palestine, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq is on Saudi Hands and will not go in vain. The greed of keeping their kingdom’s wealth to themselves, has cost millions of lives even before 9/11.

    Don’t worry that you will not be chopped to your size… It is coming.


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