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The flag of Saudi Arabia. Alamy/PA
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia says it executed 81 convicts in a single day

Officials said those executed included convicted members of al Qaida and the Islamic State group.

SAUDI ARABIA HAS executed 81 people convicted of a variety of crimes, including killings and belonging to militant groups, in the largest mass execution conducted by the kingdom in recent memory.

The state-run Saudi Press Agency announced the executions, saying they included people “convicted of various crimes, including the murdering of innocent men, women and children”.

The kingdom also said they included members of al Qaida, the so-called Islamic State group and backers of Yemen’s Houthi rebels.

“The accused were provided with the right to an attorney and were guaranteed their full rights under Saudi law during the judicial process, which found them guilty of committing multiple heinous crimes that left a large number of civilians and law enforcement officers dead,” the Saudi Press Agency said.

“The kingdom will continue to take a strict and unwavering stance against terrorism and extremist ideologies that threaten the stability of the entire world.”

The kingdom’s last mass execution came in January 2016 with 47 people including a prominent opposition Shiite cleric who had rallied demonstrations.

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