Two cases in Nigeria and Saudi Arabia involving the death penalty for adultery and homosexual practices underline the cultural clash between those countries which adopt the Sharia (Islamic Law) and those which do not.
In Nigeria, the thirty-six-year old Safya Husaini is accused of adultery and faces death by stoning. In this case, she will be buried up to her neck and huge stones will be hurled at her head by a baying crowd, whipped into a fury, until her skull is smashed and her brains spill out. The unforgivable crime of adultery was judged by an Islamic court in Sokoto, one of the Islamic States of Nigeria, in October 2001 and the sentence was applied. The application was delayed until she gave birth to her baby daughter but now that she has been born, the stoning may take place at any moment, depriving Safya of her life and her baby of the right to grow up in the care of her mother.
The case is even more shocking because the accusation of adultery , it transpires, is no more than a case of rape, when a friend of Safya’s father decided to have his way with her, and she became pregnant. Various eye-witnesses confirmed this fact.
President Obasanjo is the only person who can save this young lady, through a presidential pardon and the international community is pleading with him to show mercy.
The French Minister for Youth and Sports, Marie George Buffet, has written to president Obasanjo asking for clemency, along with several human rights organisations. At a time when the religious anachronism of the Taleban has been swept from Afghanistan, it would appear that stoning to death a young lady who was raped is totally unacceptable in the world of today and the international community should express its position to the Nigerian President.
Meanwhile, in Saudi Arabia, three male citizens were decapitated for homosexual practices in the beginning of the year. The Act-up association, based in France, has denounced the silence and indifference of the western nations regarding these crimes of State, which are equivalent to a death sentence for all the oppressed minorities.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru