Eight Bangladeshis beheaded in Saudi Arabia

Eight Bangladeshi migrants were beheaded in public in the Saudi Arabian capital after they were convicted of killing an Egyptian security guard four years ago, a media report said.

They were charged with robbing a warehouse and killing a security guard, Egyptian national Hussein Saeed Mohammed Abdulkhaleq, in April 2007, bdnews24.com reported on Saturday.

Mamun Abdul Mannan, Faruq Jamal, Sumon Miah, Mohammed Sumon, Shafiq al-Islam, Masud Shamsul Haque, Abu al-Hussain Ahmed and Mutir al-Rahman were executed Friday in Riyadh. Three other accused were given jail terms.

Human rights group Amnesty International has condemned the execution.

"Court proceedings in Saudi Arabia fall far short of international standards for fair trial and news of these recent multiple executions is deeply disturbing," said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, the group's Middle East director.

"The Saudi authorities appear to have increased the number of executions in recent months, a move that puts the country at odds with the worldwide trend against the death penalty," he said in a statement.

The organisation pointed out that majority of those executed recently in Saudi Arabia were workers from poor countries.

Most of the defendants have no defence lawyer, have insufficient hold of the Arabic language to follow proceedings and in many cases they are not informed of the progress of legal proceedings against them, it said.

They also have no access to influential figures or money, both of which might have secured them pardons. Saudi Arabia applies the death penalty for a wide range of offences, the web news portal said quoting the statement.

The beheadings bring the number of executions in Saudi Arabia this year to 58, more than double than the 2010 figures. Twenty of those executed this year were foreign nationals.

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