Saudi Arabia sentences 7 to death over 2014 Ashura attack

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A Saudi court has sentenced seven people to death and charged three others with 25 years’ imprisonment each for a terror attack in the Shia-populated eastern province of Qatif in 2014.

According to the television channel Al-Ekhbariya, the court yesterday issued “a preliminary verdict against those accused of the terrorist operation,” referring to the attack in the town of Al-Dalwa in November 2014 when attackers gunned down eight people as they commemorated Ashura.

There are a total of 12 people detained and held responsible for the killings, including the seven who were sentenced to death, the three who were handed 25-year prison sentences, and two others who have not yet been sentenced.

The attackers were also reportedly linked to the terror group Daesh at the time of their attack. It was one of the worst to take place in the kingdom over the past decade, contributing to extremists’ targeting of Saudi Arabia’s Shia minority largely located in the east of the country.

In the following year, further attacks also took place in the same province such as in May 2015 when 21 were killed in a bombing of a Shia mosque, as well as in October when gunmen killed five people in another Ashura commemoration.

Political Thought in Contemporary Shi‘a Islam: Muhammad Mahdi Shams al-Din

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