View Full Version : Saudi Witch Hunt

THE Gypsy
12-15-2011, 02:27 PM
How Do You Prove Someone's a Witch in Saudi Arabia?

In yet another reminder that the phrase "witch hunts" isn't only used figuratively these days, the Saudi Interior Ministry announced on Monday that it had beheaded a woman named Amina bint Abdul Halim bin Salem Nasser for practicing "witchcraft and sorcery." The London-based al-Hayat newspaper, citing the chief of the religious police who arrested the woman after a report from a female investigator, claims Nasser was tricking people into paying $800 per session to have their illnesses cured.

So, how did Saudi authorities prove Nasser was a witch? The government hasn't gone into detail, but a look at the kingdom's past witchcraft cases suggests the bar for proving someone guilty isn't very high. Witch hunting is fairly institutionalized in Saudi Arabia, with the country's religious police running an Anti-Witchcraft Unit and a sorcery hotline to combat practices like astrology and fortune telling that are considered un-Islamic.

...A year later, Saudi authorities beheaded an Egyptian pharmacist who had been accused by neighbors of casting spells to separate a man from his wife and placing Korans in mosque bathrooms. "He confessed to adultery with a woman and desecrating the Koran by placing it in the bathroom," the Saudi Press Agency reported, adding that books on black magic, a candle with an incantation "to summon devils," and "foul-smelling herbs" had been found in the pharmacist's home.

...The most prominent witchcraft case came in 2008, when a Saudi court slapped a death sentence on Ali Sabat, a Lebanese television personality on a religious pilgrimage to Medina, for making psychic predictions on a Lebanon-based satellite channel (the picture above shows Lebanese human rights activists fashioning a mock gallows outside the Saudi embassy in Beirut to demand Sabat's release). Sabat's lawyer told NPR that the Saudi religious police arrested Sabat after recognizing him from television and pressured him to confess to violating Islam if he hoped to return to Lebanon (his confession landed him a beheading instead, though the Saudi Supreme Court eventually freed Sabat after ruling that his actions hadn't harmed anyone).




12-15-2011, 03:38 PM
I'm sure in Saudia Arabia, it's very easy for a muslim man to accuse any woman of witchcraft, and to accuse any non-muslim man.

In the 1600s, all it took was a bunch of children faking seizures.

12-15-2011, 04:40 PM
I bet you weigh the same as a duck.

12-15-2011, 04:51 PM
I bet you way the same as a duck.

It's a fair cop.

12-15-2011, 04:54 PM
It's a fair cop.

I hope misspelling "weigh" isn't a sign of a witch or my ass is kindling. :eek:

12-15-2011, 05:16 PM
I hope misspelling "weigh" isn't a sign of a witch or my ass is kindling. :eek:

If you have any moles, your ass is kindling by those standards, regardless of your spelling ability and your unnatural ability to resist drowning by the unnatural practice of swimming. Especially if your land is envied by the local parson.

12-15-2011, 07:16 PM
Well the cops finally busted Madame Amina for tellin' fortunes better than they do
This Saudi life for me is through
You know you ought to quit this scene too.

12-16-2011, 12:37 AM
It's a fair cop.