Mauritanian Muslim clerics have called for the death sentence to be carried out against a blogger,Mohamed Ould Cheikh Ould Mkhaitir.
The blogger’s post on Islam and racial discrimination was said to have provoked many in a country where the caste system remains a sensitive subject.
He was sentenced to death in 2014 for apostasy.
According to a protester, his post was act of indignity.
“We are here in the front of the court supreme, all the people of Mauritania. Our demand, our first demand to execute this criminal. The prophet Mohammed is our honour, nobody has right to talk about him. He is our prophet from our religion Islam. We are demanding his execution”, she stressed.
Mauritania has not applied a death penalty since 1987 but on Sunday, the influential Forum of Imams and Ulemas issued an Islamic decree, calling for Mkhaitir’s death sentence.
(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) PRESIDENT, NATIONAL UNION OF IMAMS OF MAURITANIA MOHAMED LEMINE MAHUD SAYING:
“The government has to stop people like this and those who do similar things. They need to be punished according to sharia law without reservations. This apostasy case has been one of the biggest we have seen in the last few years” says the president of National Union of Imams of Mauritania, Mohamed Lemine.
Amnesty International and Reporters without Borders have campaigned for Mkhaitir’s pardon and release.