Saudi blogger Raif Badawi - Official Website - BenjaminMadeira
Saudi blogger Raif Badawi - Photo: Amnesty International

A look at the writings of Saudi blogger Raif Badawi – sentenced to 1,000 lashes.



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Raif Badawi was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes will be publicly flogged once a week for 20 weeks after Friday prayers outside a mosque in the Red Sea coastal city of Jiddah for setting up a website that championed free speech in the autocratic kingdom. His blog, the Saudi Free Liberals Forum, was shut down after his arrest in 2012.

Raif Badawi linked Palestine , one of the touchstones of Arab solidarity, to the question of political Islam, attacking Hamas:

I’m not in support of the Israeli occupation of any Arab country, but at the same time I do not want to replace Israel by a religious state ... whose main concern would be spreading the culture of death and ignorance among its people when we need modernisation and hope. States based on religious ideology ... have nothing except the fear of God and an inability to face up to life. Look at what had happened after the European peoples succeeded in removing the clergy from public life and restricting them to their churches. They built up human beings and (promoted) enlightenment, creativity and rebellion. States which are based on religion confine their people in the circle of faith and fear.



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