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Parliamentary questions
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27 February 2015
E-003382-15
Question for written answer E-003382-15
to the Commission (Vice-President/High Representative)
Rule 130
Kostas Chrysogonos (GUE/NGL) , Lola Sánchez Caldentey (GUE/NGL) , Barbara Spinelli (GUE/NGL) , Igor Šoltes (Verts/ALE) , Molly Scott Cato (Verts/ALE) , Takis Hadjigeorgiou (GUE/NGL) , Paloma López Bermejo (GUE/NGL) , Ivo Vajgl (ALDE) , Emmanouil Glezos (GUE/NGL) , Miroslav Poche (S&D) , Kostadinka Kuneva (GUE/NGL) , Sofia Sakorafa (GUE/NGL) , Tamás Meszerics (Verts/ALE) , Ricardo Serrão Santos (S&D) , Elly Schlein (S&D) , Marisa Matias (GUE/NGL) , Josep-Maria Terricabras (Verts/ALE) , Curzio Maltese (GUE/NGL) , Merja Kyllönen (GUE/NGL) , Lara Comi (PPE) , Angel Dzhambazki (ECR) , Tanja Fajon (S&D) , Barbara Lochbihler (Verts/ALE) , Fernando Maura Barandiarán (ALDE) , Alfred Sant (S&D) , José Inácio Faria (ALDE) , Jørn Dohrmann (ECR) , Ulrike Lunacek (Verts/ALE) , Ana Gomes (S&D) , Pier Antonio Panzeri (S&D) , Nessa Childers (S&D) , Pavel Telička (ALDE) , Petr Ježek (ALDE) , Marc Tarabella (S&D)

 Subject:  VP/HR — Torture in Saudi Arabia
 Answer in writing 

In May 2014 Raif Badawi was sentenced by the criminal court in Jeddah to corporal punishment — torture (1 000 lashes) — because he had launched a website on which he criticised the clergy and thus allegedly insulted Islam.

In January 2015 Raif Badawi received his first 50 lashes in public. His wounds were so profound that the prison doctor decided that Mr Badawi would not be able to withstand another round of lashes after a week as foreseen by the court decision.

Also in January, the 10th decapitation for 2015 took place in the holy city of Mecca, as a woman was dragged in the street and then beheaded with a sword in public. These and other similar ‘punishments’ are still provided for in Saudi Arabian law, even though the country has ratified the UN Convention against Torture.

Given that the EU should, in its relations with the wider world, contribute to the protection of human rights and strict observance of international law (Article 3(5) of the TEU), what actions has the Vice-President/High Representative taken or what actions is she planning to take to put pressure on Saudi Arabia concerning humanisation of its criminal law?

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