Saudi Arabia Executes Yemeni National Over ISIS Links

Saudi Arabia's Interior Ministry noted that the Yemeni national had pledged allegiance to ISIS.

Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Interior informed on Monday that a Yemen national was executed in Riyadh over allegations of plotting a suicide attack in the country under the direction of ISIS. The ministry noted that the man possessed an explosive belt and multiple photographs of the target. He was linked to ISIS and adapted their ideas, the ministry added.

Saudi Arabia has one of the world's highest execution rates. Earlier this year in October, a citizen belonging to Eastern Province was executed after he killed security men and possessed materials for making a Molotov cocktail bomb, according to the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
A series of ISIS-ordered shootings and bombings have taken place in the kingdom since 2014.

The man executed was identified as Mohammed al-Saddam, a Yemeni national. The interior ministry said in a statement that Mohammed al-Saddam sought to target civilian gatherings at a public facility under the instructions of the Daesh terrorist organization [Arabic acronym of ISIS].

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'The man had pledged allegiance to ISIS'

The statement by the Interior Ministry further noted that the death sentence was carried out in Riyadh on Monday. It also noted that the man had 'pledged allegiance to ISIS' and was planning a 'suicide attack using an explosive belt.' The ministry, however, did not give details on when the Yemeni national was arrested. The Saudi authorities did not reveal further details about the execution.

A total of 70 people have been executed in Saudi Arabia this year

Amnesty International reported in August that around 40 people had faced execution in Saudi Arabia this year between January and July. According to AFP, a total of 70 people have been executed in the kingdom this year. Saudi Arabia recorded the highest number in a year in 2019 with 198 executions.

The Human Rights Council noted that Saudi Arabia planned to abolish court-ordered floggings. The move is lauded by human rights activists worldwide. Saudi Arabia even released a prisoner in November, who was arrested for participating in anti-government protests as a minor in 2012.