Saudi Arabia

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Family: 360 Lashes for Wine Could Kill Elderly Brit

Karl Andree, 74, faces steep punishment in Saudi Arabia

(Newser) - British PM David Cameron is personally appealing for the release of an elderly Briton who faces 360 lashes in Saudi Arabia—a punishment family members say will kill him. Karl Andree, 74, was arrested for transporting homemade wine in the port city of Jiddah in August 2014, reports the New ... More »

India: Saudi Employer Cut Off Maid's Arm

Attack was revenge for complaining of mistreatment

(Newser) - Indian diplomats say they are disturbed by reports that one of their nationals working in Saudi Arabia had her arm cut off by a vengeful employer. The family of 58-year-old Kasturi Munirathinam says that when Saudi officials conducted a routine check of the home where she was working as a... More »

Wife Posts Video of Husband With Maid, Could Face Jail

A lawyer says she could be fined more than $100K for defaming her husband

(Newser) - A Saudi wife who posted footage of her husband pursuing and groping their maid could face jail time and a stiff fine for defaming him—and in the process has caused a social media outcry, largely in her defense, reports Emirates 24/7 . The woman let the footage of her husband'... More »

Judge: 9/11 Families Can't Sue Saudi Arabia

Evidence doesn't overcome 'sovereign immunity'

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia, homeland of 15 of the 19 Sept. 11 hijackers, can't be sued by families of victims for its alleged role in the attacks, a federal judge decided on Tuesday. US District Judge George Daniels ruled that the evidence—including "20th hijacker" Zacarias Moussaoui's claim that... More »

Iran: Diplomat Is Missing in Hajj Disaster

Tehran blames stampede Saudi 'incompetence'

(Newser) - As the hajj religious pilgrimage entered its final day today, officials in Saudi Arabia continued to grapple with the aftermath of a deadly stampede that killed at least 719 people. Iran announced in a state TV broadcast that among those Iranians still missing are a former ambassador to Lebanon as... More »

Why Saudis Will Take Rare Step of Crucifying This Man

Activists say they're trying to scare other protesters

(Newser) - Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, a Saudi pro-democracy protester arrested when he was 17, has been sentenced to a grisly death , and activists fear his crucifixion could take place any day unless authorities step in. Activists say al-Nimr, who is now 21, was tortured into confessing, and United Nations human rights experts... More »

How the Mecca Stampede Happened

'Fluid dynamics' can cause disaster, experts say

(Newser) - With crowds the size of those on the hajj pilgrimage, normality can turn to chaos and horror in a matter of minutes, according to experts who say yesterday's stampede near Mecca followed a grimly familiar pattern. A big part of the problem is "fluid dynamics—except people are... More »

Hundreds Die in Stampede at 'Stoning the Devil' Ritual

Disaster hits hajj pilgrimage once again

(Newser) - A stampede at the "stoning the devil" ritual has become the hajj pilgrimage's worst disaster in a decade. Saudi authorities say at least 717 people were killed; previous reports said at least another 450 were injured in the crush of people at Mina, near the holy city of... More »

Man Arrested at 17 in Saudi Arabia to Be Crucified

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr's appeals have run out

(Newser) - Ali Mohammed al-Nimr was just 17 when he was arrested in 2012 and accused of taking part in anti-government protests and illegally possessing firearms; he was sentenced to death by crucifixion in 2014. Now, Saudi Arabia has dismissed his final appeal and he has no other legal options to fight... More »

Wind Blamed as Mecca Disaster Toll Tops 100

238 injured after crane falls on Islam's holiest site

(Newser) - The head of Saudi Arabia's civil defense directorate says high winds caused a massive crane to topple over and smash into Mecca's Grand Mosque yesterday, killing at least 107 people at Islam's holiest site ahead of the start of the annual Hajj pilgrimage. The official says unusually... More »

65 Dead in Mecca Crane Collapse

Construction accident occurs as holy city prepares for annual pilgrimage

(Newser) - A crane crashed through the roof of the Grand Mosque in the Muslim holy city of Mecca today, Saudi Arabia officials announced. The death toll from the tragedy currently sits at 65, the BBC reports. Details are few, but the crane collapsed as Mecca prepares for the yearly Muslim Hajj... More »

Saudi Women Rock the Voter Registration for First Time

Historic moment as women prepare to cast ballots in December elections

(Newser) - Not unusual: A well-known businessperson and a schoolteacher registered to vote Sunday in Saudi Arabia's municipal elections in December. Unusual: that they were both women. Jamal Al-Saadi and Safinaz Abu Al-Shamat earned the honors of being the first two females ever in the kingdom to register (Saadi in Medina,... More »

Saudis Arrest 400 in Anti-Terror Sweep

Announcement comes day after devastating ISIS bomb in Iraq

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia announced today it has broken up planned Islamic State attacks in the kingdom and arrested more than 400 suspects in an anti-terrorism sweep. The Saudi Interior Ministry accused those arrested over the past few weeks of involvement in several attacks, including a suicide bombing in May that killed... More »

Saudi Prince Is Giving Away His Entire Fortune

Alwaleed's billions will go to charity

(Newser) - The push by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett to get billionaires to give away at least half their wealth to charity just got a major boost: Saudi Arabia's Prince Alwaleed bin Talal says he will give away his entire $32 billion fortune in the coming years, reports Bloomberg . That... More »

Kansas Student 'Saved Hundreds' in Mosque Attack

ISIS claims 2nd suicide attack on Shiite mosque

(Newser) - Abduljaleel Alarbash was a long way from Kansas when he died, but his fellow students at Wichita State University say they will never forget him or his bravery. The 22-year-old, who had gone to Saudi Arabia to marry his fiancee, was one of three volunteer security officers killed in an... More »

5 Astounding Numbers: the World's Biggest Hotel

The Abraj Kudai is set to open in 2017

(Newser) - Come 2017, the world will have a new largest hotel by room count—by a hefty margin. The Guardian takes a look at what's coming to Saudi Arabia's Mecca: the $3.5 billion Abraj Kudai, which will sit about a mile from the Grand Mosque and feature one... More »

Saudi Arabia Now Hiring Executioners

Beheading rate has more than doubled since last year

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia has stepped up its execution rate: Eighty-five people have been beheaded so far this year, compared to 88 in all of 2014, according to Human Rights Watch—and created job opportunities in the process. The country's Ministry of Civil Service has advertised for eight executioners, with no... More »

Saudis Say They'll Keep Up With Iran in Nuke War

Obama meeting with Arab leaders today to assure them of Middle East security

(Newser) - President Obama is convening with six Arab leaders today at Camp David, hoping to assure them that a deal between the West and Iran to contain the latter country's nuclear efforts won't compromise the security of the Middle East. But the Saudis already seem to be balking, announcing... More »

Moroccan F-16 Goes MIA Ahead of Yemen Ceasefire

So far Yemen has remained relatively tight-lipped about the missing fighter jet

(Newser) - A Moroccan F-16 fighter jet taking part in a Saudi-led coalition targeting Shiite rebels in Yemen has gone missing, the North African nation's military said today, a day ahead of the start of a proposed five-day humanitarian ceasefire. It wasn't immediately clear what happened to the jet, which... More »

Saudi King Skipping Summit at Camp David

Because it coincides with Yemen ceasefire, minister says

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia's King Salman will not attend a Camp David summit of US and allied Arab leaders, his foreign minister, Adel al-Jubeir, said today. In a statement, al-Jubeir says the summit Thursday coincides with a humanitarian cease-fire in the conflict in Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition is fighting Shiite... More »

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