Saudi Arabia beheads Sri Lankan maid for 'killing baby'

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 10, 2013 05:51 hrs

London: Saudi Arabian authorities have beheaded a young Sri Lankan housemaid for killing a baby in her care, despite years of appeals for clemency from her home country and widespread international condemnation.

Rizana Nafeek had denied strangling the 4-month-old baby in 2005 and the execution came despite global appeals to call it off because she was only 17 at the time.

According to Sky News, rights groups said the death sentence was a violation of international codes governing the rights of minors.

Appeals by the Sri Lankan government were also rejected and Nafeek was executed near the capital Riyadh, on Wednesday.

Sri Lanka's president, Mahinda Rajapaksa, had made a series of personal appeals to try to stop the execution and grant a pardon to the maid.

Rajapaksa said he and his government 'deplored' the beheading, the report said.

According to the report, in a statement the Saudi Interior Ministry said the maid had been found guilty of smothering the infant to death after an argument with the child's mother, her employer.

More from Sify: