First Saudi execution after Ramzan pause

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Saudi Arabia carried out its first execution in five weeks on Thursday after a pause for Ramzan, beheading one of its citizens convicted of a double murder.

Sayir al-Rasheedi was found guilty of fatally shooting two Saudi brothers in a dispute, the official Saudi Press Agency reported, citing the interior ministry.

Authorities carried out the sentence against him in the Qassim region.

SPA had reported no executions during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and the Eidul Fitr holiday which followed.

The latest beheading brings to 103 the number of executions in the kingdom so far this year, a sharp increase on the 87 recorded during the whole of 2014, according to AFP tallies.

This year’s figure is still below the record 192 which human rights group Amnesty International said were carried out in 1995.

Human Rights Watch has accused Saudi authorities of waging a ‘campaign of death’ by executing more people in the first six months of this year than in all of last year.