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Daily News Analysis

Saudi Head-choppers Go Berserk over Canadian Criticism of Rights Abuses

Crescent International

Samar Badawi, a human rights activist

Friday Aug 10, 2018

In the week since the Bedouin-dominated kingdom of Saudi Arabia went berserk over Canadian criticism of its atrocious human rights record, things have not cooled off.

The Saudis ordered the Canadian ambassador to leave Riyadh in 24 hours. It also recalled its own envoy from Ottawa and ordered 15,000 Saudi students at Canadian universities to return home by September 1.

Additionally, another 800 doctors and medical students have also been ordered to return home.

As if these moves were not silly enough, the Saudi regime also announced that its airline, Saudia, would stop flying to Toronto starting Monday August 13. This is like cutting the nose to spite the face.

Suspending Saudia flights and withdrawing students from Canadian universities will adversely affect Saudi Arabia.

Since this is Hajj season, many Muslim Canadians that had booked flights on Saudi Airline will now have to scramble to find alternate flights. Additionally, with Saudia withdrawal from the market, other airlines will pick up business and leave the Bedouins’ airline up in the air without passengers!

The biggest blow is to Saudi students. The medieval kingdom is not known for scholarship or producing bright ideas. The 15,000 students and 800 medical professionals have been put in a quandary.

Given the experience of Saudi students that were withdrawn from Qatar last year and with nowhere to go, Saudi students in Canada fear a similar fate.

But what triggered the Saudi angst against Canada?

The dispute broke out on August 3 after the Canadian Embassy in Riyadh tweeted that it was “gravely concerned” over a spike in the arrests of human rights campaigners in the kingdom. It mentioned in particular the human rights activist Samar Badawi calling on “Saudi authorities to immediately release them and all other peaceful #humanrights activists.”

Saudi Arabia’s baby-faced Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir criticized Canada’s call to free jailed civil society activists and said his country would not tolerate any “interference” in its domestic affairs.

Jubeir tweeted on August 6 that Canada’s position was based on “misleading information,” adding that those detained were “subject to Saudi laws that guarantee their rights.”

Jubeir, a commoner, cannot but do what would please the tempestuous illiterate Crown (clown) Prince Muhammad bin Salman. This childish man has taken on too many fights without winning any.

The reference to “interference” in Saudi domestic affairs as well as “rights guaranteed” to detainees under Saudi law needs deconstruction.

Saudi Arabia has been interfering in other countries’ affairs for decades. Let us list some: Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Syria, Bahrain and Yemen.

In Yemen, it attacked a school bus in Saada province massacring 40 children on August 9.

Since March 2015, the Saudis have bombed dirt-poor Yemen killing and maiming an estimated 600,000 people. Cholera epidemic—described by the UN as the worst in history—rages in Yemen. It has affected more than one million children.

Let us also consider the “rights guaranteed” to detainees under Saudi law.

In Saudi Arabia, there is no codified law. The whim of the judge or some prince passes off for law.

Under the barbaric Saudi practices, a father cannot be executed for killing his daughter or a husband for killing his wife.

This medieval regime claims that its laws are based on the Qur’an and the Prophetic Sunnah. This is an insult to Islam.

There is not a single verse in the Qur’an or a single hadith of the Prophet (pbuh) that allows for such barbaric practices.

Let us consider one specific case of how the Saudi “judicial” system works.

In December 2012, a Saudi celebrity preacher, one Layhan al Ghamdi was arrested for raping, torturing and brutally killing his five-year-old daughter.

The young girl’s back and skull were smashed and broken with an iron rod. Why did the preacher rape and kill his own daughter?

He accused the little girl of committing adultery!

Would a five-year-old girl even know about sex? Such allegations can only come from the demented minds of the Saudi barbarians.

Far from sentencing him to death, the court simply ordered the preacher to pay “blood money” to the girl’s mother and released him for the time served (a few months).

This caused uproar in the country forcing a retrial of the rapist preacher but he was released after another few months when the judge ruled that there was no evidence he had raped his daughter!

There are more than 15,000 political prisoners in Saudi Arabia (other estimates put the number as high as 40,000). In most cases, these people—academics, lawyers, religious scholars—have only asked for minimum rights for the people.

Lawyers have been jailed for defending their clients.

Human rights activists in Canada have lobbied the Canadian government for many years to terminate the $15 billion arms contract with Saudi Arabia.

The Canadian contract stipulates that the regime cannot use these armored vehicles against its own civilian population. The Saudi regime has violated the agreement by using these vehicles against the Shia minority in the Eastern province.

The latest spat between Saudi Arabia and Canada offers a good opportunity to terminate all dealings with these barbarians from Najd.

It is time for Canada to uphold its own values and principles.

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