Every country is sovereign and has the right to develop its own laws and punishments. That’s simply a fact of the world in which we live. The case reported by Arab News in the article below, however, suggests that Saudi law needs to be reviewed.
The story is of a man who was sentenced to nine months in jail for standing by as his wife abused a servant and eventually killed her. The wife, yet to be sentenced, is likely to be jailed for two years. Because the victim’s families accepted ‘blood money’, the killer avoids the possibility of being executed.
Now, I don’t object to removing the death penalty from the table, but a two-year sentence for committing murder seems rather cavalier. Would most Saudis stand for such leniency if one of their family members had been the victim? I don’t think so. Nor do I think a nine-month sentence adequate to punish the husband’s role in standing by while the abuse was going on, even had it not lead to death.
I think the sentences here point to a level of racism within Saudi society and the Saudi legal system that does the country little credit…
Man jailed for failing to stop abuse of maid
Ghazanfar Ali Khan | Arab News
RIYADH: A Saudi employer whose wife tortured the family’s Indonesian housemaid to death has been sentenced to nine months in prison for failing to intervene and save the maid’s life.
The man has already served six months in prison awaiting trial, while his wife, who has been in an Abha prison for the last 11 months, is scheduled to be sentenced for manslaughter on July 14 by a court in Khamis Mushayt.
… In the Khamis Mushayt case, the court has already found the man guilty of negligence and disregard for the maid who refused to eat in protest at the beatings she suffered at the hands of his wife. Lawyers expect the wife, a teacher, may receive more than two years in prison.
The maid’s family has accepted blood money in compensation for the death.