Saudi authorities announced Saturday (March 12, 2022) that they executed 81 people in one day convicted of various crimes in the kingdom, which has one of the highest execution rates in the world. The number of deaths marks more than the total of 69 executions in all of 2021.
Activists said that among the detainees were 40 Shiite citizens and seven Yemenis.
The Saudi press agency (SPA) quoted the Interior Ministry as saying that the suspects belonged to “ISIS, Al-Qaeda and Al-Houthi terrorist organization, and other terrorist organizations hostile to the kingdom.”
Those executed included 73 Saudis, seven Yemenis and one Syrian.
Saturday’s announcement of 81 deaths marks more than the total of 69 executions in all of 2021.
Conservative Saudi Arabia has long been sharply criticized by human rights organizations for its high death rates and judicial system.
Saudi Arabia put to death 184 people in 2019, the highest number in a year in the kingdom, Amnesty International said. The kingdom had reduced the number of executions by 85% in 2020 compared with the previous year, putting the number for 2020 at 27.