TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – A court in Saudi Arabia has sentenced 15 Shiite citizens to death on trumped-up charges of spying for Iran in yet another case of crackdown on the country’s Shiite minority, a report said.
On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia’s Specialized Criminal Court sentenced 15 to death. It also sentenced 15 other suspects to prison terms ranging from six months to 25 years, and acquitted two, Reuters reported.
The suspects, comprising 30 Saudi Shiite Muslims, reportedly one Iranian and an Afghan, were detained in 2013 on charges of alleged spying for Iran and went on trial in February.
The rulings are subject to appeal, and death sentences must go to the king for ratification.
Back in January, Saudi Arabia executed 47 prisoners, including Prominent Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr.
Sheikh Nimr was detained in July 2012 on charges of delivering anti-regime speeches and defending political prisoners.
His arrest sparked widespread protests in the Arab country, leaving several people dead.
Nimr's Qatif-area hometown of Awamiya has been the scene of repeated security incidents since 2011.