Canada's Foreign Minister Stephane Dion had requested Saudi Arabia to release blogger Raif Badawi so he could join his family in Canada. However, Saudi ambassador Naif Bin Bandir AlSudairy, said the request was refused.
|AlSudairy said that the case had nothing to do with relations between Canada and Saudi Arabia. Badawi is a Saudi citizen not a Canadian. However, his wife, Ensaf Haider, sought asylum in Canada with their three children after she received death threats in Saudi Arabia. Canada granted them asylum.|
In a new law last year it included atheism as a terrorist offence. It uses the death penalty for offences including blasphemy, apostasy and witchcraft. The kingdom has beheaded 40 people so far in 2015, rights watchdog Amnesty International said this week, based on local media reports.A brief description of the Saudi legal system can be found on Wikipedia. While most courts are based on Sharia law, there is also a Specialized Criminal Court that deals with terrorists as well as human rights activists. It is this court that dealt with Badawi.