Not enough swordsmen for executions in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia, the only country in the world that still beheads criminals, is considering firing squads as an alternative means of execution due to “the scarcity of swordsmen and their unavailability in a number of regions,” Saudi newspapers have reported, according to the New York Times.
The princes who govern Saudi provinces should be free to use firing squads at executions, a special inter-ministerial committee has reportedly recommended.
The few officially authorized swordsmen were so busy traveling between different regions to conduct executions that they sometimes arrived late, “which causes security confusion” complicated by “the resulting spreading of rumors through modern technology,” a government report said.
Fifteen people have been beheaded so far this year and more than 75 in each of the past two years in convictions for murder, rape, armed robbery, drug trafficking and other offenses in Saudi Arabia, the reports said.