Saudi Arabia remains one of the nations with the worst human rights records in the world.
The death penalty, which is often carried out by beheading, is the punishment for many crimes, including sorcery and blasphemy. Even juveniles have been executed when convicted of these crimes. The trials preceding executions are often unfair—defendants can be tried with little or no legal representation. When Capital Punishment is not administered, Corporal Punishment often is. Flogging is a mandatory sentence for some convictions in Saudi Arabia.
Severe discrimination against women and girls continues in Saudi Arabia. Adequate protections against violence, including domestic violence, do not exist for Saudi women. Women remain unequal under family law, are denied equal employment opportunities, and are banned from driving or traveling alone.
In December of 2011, the Obama administration announced an agreement to sell, to Saudi Arabia, 84 new F-15SA jets, manufactured by Boeing, and to provide upgrades to 70 F-15s already in the Saudi fleet. The Royal Saudi Air Force will also get help with training, logistics and maintenance. The price tag? Thirty billion dollars.
In November of 2011, Sikorsky Aerospace Services announced that the Saudi’s fleet of U.S. manufactured UH-60A Black Hawk helicopters will be upgraded to the UH-60L configuration.
Our A-to-L conversion program for the UH-60A Black Hawk helicopters provides the Saudi Land Forces with a cost-effective option to extend the service life of their fleets while permitting better integration with newer Black Hawk helicopter models,” says David Adler, president of Sikorsky Aerospace Services, on Sikorsky’s website.As has happened in Egypt, Libya, and Syria, the people of Saudi Arabia will, one day, rise up against their repressive government. And when they do, from where will the weapons have originated that will be turned against the Saudi civilians? Black Hawks and F-15s will make excellent weapons to be used in the name of “National Security”.
Abbe Sudvarg, PEP Board Chair