Saudi Arabia beheads man for murder

A Saudi man was beheaded Wednesday by the sword in Riyadh for murder, the interior ministry said.

Salman al-Ghamedi was found guilty of stabbing to death another Saudi, Ahmed al-Qahtani, following a dispute, the ministry said in a statement carried by SPA state news agency.

The beheading brings to 76 the number of executions in Saudi Arabia this year, based on an AFP count.

In September, Amnesty International called on the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom where 140 people were on death row to establish an "immediate moratorium on executions."

The London-based rights watchdog said Saudi Arabia was one of a minority of states which voted against a UN General Assembly resolution last December calling for a worldwide moratorium on executions.

Rape, murder, apostasy, armed robbery and drug trafficking are all punishable by death under Saudi Arabia's strict interpretation of Islamic sharia law.

Amnesty says Saudi Arabia executed 27 convicts in 2010, compared to 67 executions announced the year before.

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