At this moment I can’t recall who said “an eye for an eye will leave the world blind”, it may have been Gandhi, I’m not sure, but this quote came to my mind when I found out a judge is willing to enforce a law supposedly created by a god, based on mere retribution and raw punishment.
It seems to me that through all of the chaos that is our history; through all of the wrongs and the discord; through all of the pain and suffering, human kind hasn’t learned as much as it should have. If we allow ourselves to live in a world where primitive laws uttered by an alleged god are enforced, if we allow the powers that be to destroy human lives or to hurt our own kind, then we have nothing worth living for.
A Saudi judge has asked several hospitals if they are willing to damage a man’s spinal cord as punishment for a cleaver attack that left a 22-year-old paralysed.
The victim, Abdul-Aziz al Mutairi, became paralysed and subsequently lost a foot after a fight more than two years ago.
An unnamed man was sentenced to 14 months in prison for the assault, but released after serving only half that time.
The shortened jail time has reportedly enraged Mr Mutairi’s family.
His 27-year-old brother Khaled said they want an equivalent punishment for the attacker and have appealed to a judge in northwestern Tabuk province.
“We are asking for our legal right under Islamic law,” the brother said.
“There is no better word than God’s word – an eye for an eye.”
The judge has since asked several hospitals if medical paralysis was possible and would they perform the operation.
Local newspapers reported a facility in the capital Riyadh had declined, saying it could not inflict such harm.
Saudi Arabia enforces strict Islamic law and occasionally hands out punishments based on the ancient legal code.
Amnesty International has expressed concerns over the reports and said it was contacting Saudi authorities for details.
“We are very concerned and we will appeal to the authorities not to carry out such a punishment,” said Lamri Chirouf, the group’s researcher on Saudi Arabia.
He added this was the first time Amnesty had heard of a punishment involving the damaging of a spinal cord.
“It’s hard to follow details of the Saudi justice system. People are sentenced in closed trials with no access to the public and no lawyers.”