Again reviewing

Breaking news on Raif Badawi:

Saudi Arabia’s Supreme Court is again reviewing the case of jailed blogger Raif Badawi, raising the possibility that his draconian sentence may be reduced, his family has told The Independent.

Mr Badawi’s wife Ensaf Haidar said she had been informed of the development by a senior source in the Saudi Ministry of Justice. The blogger’s family said they were hopeful that the move by the kingdom’s highest court is a “good signal” that his sentence is under reconsideration.

Ms Haidar added that the news was “clouded with secrecy and ambiguity” and that she was still extremely worried for her husband’s welfare. “I do hope that it will be a beginning to correct the course of Raif’s case – I repeat, I am hoping,” she said.

“I cannot say that this is good news, just that I hope it is a good sign. I expect that the flogging could still happen at any time, especially as the court could confirm the verdict then return for more deliberation, and all of this is done in complete secrecy. We do not know even on what basis the court is making its decisions.”

You know how they are. They could come back with a worse sentence, just to tell the pesky rest of the world how devout and sadistic they are. But we can hope they’re more keen to make the whole thing go away. (It won’t. We’ll move on to the next case.)


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