This week, we have seen another golden oldie from the Saudi legal system. Nour Miyati was severely abused by her employer who had tied up the Indonesian maid for a month and refused her food and basic necessities as punishment. Ms Miyati, 25, ultimately needed hospitalization and, after gangrene set in, they had to amputate her fingers and toes. While insisting that Islamic law protected servants, the Saudi courts just overturned the conviction of the couple responsible, including the wife who had admitted the abuse. Their punishment? $640.
In some ways, the decision of the judge in Riyadh is viewed as a progressive move in the Kingdom: originally, the police arrested the maid, convicted her of falsely accusing her employers and sentenced her to 79 lashes.
After an outcry, the sentence against the maid was overturned and “compelling evidence” found of the abuse that she alleged. The wife of was eventually found guilty and sentenced to 35 lashes.
Human Rights Watch has protested the decision.
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