These are the first executions of the new year. Last year more than 150 people were executed. Sheikh al-Nimr had criticised the marginalisation of the Shia community in the predominantly Sunni Saudi Arabia. Iran has responded with threats.
There can be no peace in Islam until one sect is entirely submissive to the other.
That is not how peace came to Christianity
Why did they do it?
Analysis, SA could even lose “coalition partners” in the Yemen conflict over this but this may be to send a message to protesters in the country itself.
But while any blowback seems inevitable, the executions show that Saudi leaders who backed the killings believe the threat posed by protests in the country’s Eastern Province - and the constituency they have curried favour with as a result of killing al-Qaeda linked figures - outweigh the downside of the regional consequences that may follow, say analysts.
Since 2011, there have been sporadic Arab Spring-inspired protests in Saudi’s Eastern Province, home to the country’s Shia minority – who make up 10 to 15 percent of the kingdom’s 29 million population.
Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, 56, was a driving force behind the start of the protests and, with his execution, is the message that dissent in the area will not be permitted.
“There were protests by people in Eastern Province and they don’t want to tolerate any protests,” Andrew Hammond, a recent policy follow with the European Council on Foreign Relations, told Middle East Eye.
Many protesters in the Eastern Province, said Hammond, are Shia, and the Sunni leadership uses sectarian themes for various purposes. “But are they driven by hatred of Shia themselves? There is some of that there, but ultimately, they saw a threat from a certain community and they moved against them,” he said.
“It is a clear message to anybody who wants to overthrow the government,” said Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi columnist and General Manager of Alarab satellite TV, told MEE on Saturday. "Nimr openly called for overthrow of the system and allegiance to Wilayit al-Faqih [and to] Iran’s supreme leader.”
“That amounts as treason by any democratic country,” Khashoggi said. “[His execution] is not about his view as a Shia; it’s about his call to overthrow the government and swear allegiance to a foreign leader.”
Not a part of the world I would be calling for the overthrow of the government! :rolleyes:
Assuming Shiekh Nimr Al Nimr indeed said these kinds of things.
Column: Shiekh was “non-violent”, not a terrorist.
I wonder how many of these people were actually terrorists. Apparently the person in the article wasn’t one since he advocated for peaceful demonstrations only.
Saudi Arabia announces it is severing diplomatic relations with Iran.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir was speaking after demonstrators had stormed the Saudi embassy in Tehran.
Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr and 46 others were executed on Saturday. Saudi Arabia found them guilty of “terrorism”.
Mr Jubeir said that all Iranian diplomats must leave Saudi Arabia within 48 hours.
Saudi Arabia has evacuated its diplomats from Tehran, Dubai-based al-Arabiya TV reports.