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Friday, January 11, 2013 - 05.24 GMT

Britain condemns beheading of Sri Lankan housemaid


The British government yesterday joined the European Union and human rights organizations worldwide to condemn the beheading of Sri Lankan housemaid Rizana Nafeek by Saudi Arabian authorities Wednesday.

Commenting on the execution of Rizana Nafeek Foreign Office Minister for the Middle East and North Africa Alistair Burt condemned the execution despite the many appeals for her sentence to be commuted.

"I condemn the execution of Rizana Nafeek in Saudi Arabia yesterday, despite the many appeals for her sentence to be commuted," Burt said in a statement today.

The statement said the UK opposes all use of the death penalty as a matter of principle, whatever the crime committed.

The Foreign Office Minister denounced the practice of beheading as "cruel and inhuman".

"The beheading of Ms. Nafeek is particularly concerning as reports suggest she may have been a child of 17 at the time the crime was committed. We also find the practice of beheading to be particularly cruel and inhuman," he said.

"We continue to raise our concerns about human rights with the Saudi authorities, including its frequent use of the death penalty," the Minister stressed.





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Last modified: January 11, 2013.

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