Friday, November 16, 2007

Meanwhile, in Saudi Arabia II

A woman who was gang-raped will also get a prison sentence and 200 lashes:

An appeal court in Saudi Arabia has doubled the number of lashes and added a jail sentence as punishment for a woman who was gang-raped.

The victim was initially punished for violating laws on segregation of the sexes - she was in an unrelated man's car at the time of the attack.

When she appealed, the judges said she had been attempting to use the media to influence them.

The attackers' sentences - originally of up to five years - were doubled.

Extra penalties

According to the Arab News newspaper, the 19-year-old woman, who is from Saudi Arabia's Shia minority, was gang-raped 14 times in an attack in the eastern province a year-and-a-half ago.


The Arab News quoted an official as saying the judges had decided to punish the girl for trying to aggravate and influence the judiciary through the media.

The victim's lawyer was suspended from the case, has had his licence to work confiscated, and faces a disciplinary session.

What does 200 lashes do to you? Can you die from it?

Then the required statement: No, this does not mean that the U.S. should invade Iran or even Saudi Arabia. (I so wish politicians would stop exploiting feminist causes when it benefits them and dropping them the minute they don't, by the way.)

But it is still very wrong.