Monday, November 05, 2007

Saudi Arabia amputates thief's hand

RIYADH, Nov 5 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia amputated the hand of a thief on Monday, carrying out a rarely implemented Islamic punishment in a year when the number of public beheadings is nearing a peak in the conservative kingdom.

The right hand of Amr Nasr, an Egyptian man, was removed in Mecca after he was found guilty of pick-pocketing inside the Grand Mosque, the official Saudi Press Agency said.

Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam, applies a literal reading of Sunni Islamic law, and regularly beheads those convicted of murder, rape, drugs smuggling and armed robbery.

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