A Saudi blogger, Raif Badawi, will be publicly flogged after prayers on Friday in Saudi Arabia as part of his 10-year jail term for ‘ridiculing Islamic religious figures’.
His crime was co-founding the Free Saudi Liberals website, for which he was arrested in 2012 and sentenced to 1,000 lashes ten years in prison for insulting Islam on his online forum.
According to Amnesty International, Badawi would receive 50 lashes on Friday outside the Al-Juffali mosque in Jiddah, and the rest of the sentence would be carried out over a period of 50 weeks.
The online activist was found guilty of cyber-crime in May last year and ordered by the Jiddah Criminal Court to pay a fine of 1 million Saudi riyals, or about £175,900.
He was also charged with apostasy, which carries the death penalty in the Saudi Kingdom, but he was cleared of this crime in 2013.
Badawi called his family from prison and informed them of the flogging, according to the Associated Press.
He was originally sentenced in 2013 to seven years in prison and 600 lashes, but after an appeal, the judge increased the punishment.
Following his arrest, his wife and children left the kingdom for Canada.
Badawi’s lawyer Waleed Abul-Khair was sentenced in July to 15 years imprisonment and barred from traveling for another 15 years after being found guilty by an anti-terrorism court of ‘undermining the regime and officials,’ ”inciting public opinion’ and ‘insulting the judiciary.’