UAE and Bahrain back executions in Saudi
Saudi Interior Ministry's spokesman Mansur Al Turki gestures during a news conference at the Saudi Officers club in Riyadh following the execution of 47 people convicted of terrorism.
Abu Dhabi - Riyadh's move a strong message to those who provoke strife, says Shaikh Abdullah.
The UAE and Bahrain on Saturday declared their countries' full, principled and unwavering support for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in any deterrent measures it takes to counter extremism and terrorism.
Earlier in the day, Saudi Arabia announced it had executed 47 prisoners convicted of terrorism charges. The Interior Ministry announced the names of all 47 people executed, of which 45 were Saudi citizens, one from Chad and another from Egypt.
UAE Foreign Minister Shaikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan stressed that Saudi Arabia's measures represent a clear message against terrorism and those who preach and provoke strife, division and disorder and seek to destroy the unity of society in the kingdom and to threaten its security and stability.
These measures also show Saudi Arabia's resolve and firm determination to defuse, eliminate and uproot terrorism and extremism and to deter anyone planning any attempts to provoke civic strife and unrest and to abuse the security and stability of the kingdom, Shaikh Abdullah added.
He said that carrying out the sentences against those who had been convicted is an inalienable right, especially after it had been proven that the people concerned had committed crimes. Saudi Arabia's measures were necessary to establish security for all Saudi nationals as well as for people residing in the kingdom. Bahrain also backed Riyadh in "all deterrent and needed measures it takes to confront violence and extremism".
Saudi Arabia executed on Saturday a Shia cleric, who had been behind anti-government protests.
The Al Qaeda militants executed had been convicted of taking part in a wave of deadly attacks that killed foreigners and Saudis. One of the executed was Faris Al Shuwail, a leading ideologue in Al Qaeda's Saudi branch who was arrested in August 2004 during a massive crackdown on the group following the series of deadly attacks.
Saudi Arabia said a royal court order was issued to implement the sentences after all appeals had been exhausted. The executions took place in the capital, Riyadh, and 12 other cities and towns, the Interior Ministry statement said. Nearly all executions carried out in Saudi Arabia are by beheading with a sword.
In a Press conference on Saturday, Interior Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour Al Turki said the executions were carried out inside prisons and not in public. He described the executions as an example of Saudi Arabia's tough response to terrorism.
Saudi Arabia's top cleric Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdulaziz Al Sheikh said the executions were carried out in line with Islamic law and the need to safeguard the kingdom's security. He described the executions as a "mercy to the prisoners" because it would save them from committing more evil acts and prevent chaos. - AP, Wam