Saudi Arabia has sentenced blogger Raif Badawi to 600 lashes and seven years in prison for running a blog that the state says undermined the security of the country. He actually got off easy, if you can believe it:
Mr Badawi was originally charged with apostasy, or abandonment of religion, a crime in Saudi Arabia that carries with it the death penalty.
Lawyer Waleed Abu Alkhair told the BBC that Mr Badawi, a father of three, had confirmed in court that he was a Muslim but told the judge “everyone has a choice to believe or not believe.”
He was convicted of the charges of setting up a website that undermines general security and of ridiculing religious figures.
The judge ordered that the 600 lashes be administered 150 at a time.
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