Dawn Primarolo MP's response to constituents regarding Raif Badawi:
Thank you for your recent email regarding the appalling case of Raif Badawi, sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1000 lashes in Saudi Arabia. It is my understanding that this will mean 50 lashes each week for 20 weeks.
Mr Badawi’s case has rightly caused international outrage and you may be aware that it has been raised on several occasions in the House of Commons by Labour MPs. On the most recently occasion at Prime Minister’s Questions by Tom Harris, Labour Member of Parliament for Glasgow South, asked “Does he agree that our international alliances should be built more on human rights and less on economic muscle?”
In his reply the Prime Minister appeared to suggest the government would only make representations to the Saudi government if Mr Badawi were a British citizen, which he isn’t. This was very disappointing, although I understand that the Foreign Secretary has now agreed to raise the issue. I hope that despite this the authorities in Saudi Arabia will listen to international opinion and stop what the UN has described as an “extraordinarily harsh penalty”.
Please do not hesitate to contact me again if I can be of further help with this or any other matter.