Man ‘sentenced to death for atheism’ in Saudi Arabia

A  man in Saudi Arabia has reportedly been sentenced to death on charges of apostasy after losing two appeals.

Several local media reports identified the man as Ahmad Al Shamri, in his 20s, from the town of Hafar al-Batin, who first came to the authorities’ attention in 2014 after allegedly uploading videos to social media in which he renounced Islam and the Prophet Mohammed.

He was arrested on charges of atheism and blasphemy and held in prison before being convicted by a local court and sentenced to death in February 2015.

Authorities in Saudi Arabia have used a viral party video to identify and arrest partygoers in the country

At the time Mr Shamri’s defence entered an insanity plea, adding that his client was under the influence of drugs and alcohol at the time of making the videos.

He reportedly lost an Appeals Court case, and a Supreme Court ruled against him earlier this week.

While news stories in the last few years consistently identify Mr Shamri, his identity or sentencing has not been verified by the Saudi authorities.

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