Capital punishment in the United Arab Emirates

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Capital punishment is legal in the United Arab Emirates, although it is rarely carried out. Under Emirati law, multiple crimes carry the death penalty, and the sole method of execution is firing squad. Current law allows the death penalty for apostasy from Islam, treason, murder, rape, aggravated robbery, kidnapping, terrorism, and drug trafficking, although death sentences are frequently commuted to life sentences. Overseas nationals and UAE nationals have both been executed for crimes.

Before that, there was an execution in 2011; the offender was a UAE local male, who molested and killed a child. The crime was so horrific that even the offender's lawyer decided to pull out of the case. [1]

On May 20, 2015, Jennife Dalquez, from General Santos City, Philippines, was sentenced to death by an Al Ain court for killing her employer on December 7, 2014. She claimed to have stabbed her Emirati employer in self defence because he attempted to rape her. She will launch an appeal against her sentence with the help of the Philippine embassy.

In June 2015, the Federal Supreme Court sentenced an Emirati woman, Alaa Bader al-Hashemi, to death for the murder of Ibolya Ryan and planting a handmade bomb in an Egyptian-American doctor's home in Abu Dhabi. The woman committed the crime in December 2014 and was executed at dawn on July 13, 2015. This is the only time that a prisoner has been executed within such a short time frame and this is the one of the few cases of a woman being executed [2]

Sarah Balabagan case[edit]

In 1995, Sarah Balabagan, a Filipino worker, caught the attention of many people living in the UAE. She was reported to have murdered her employer in his Al Ain house, although she has always maintained that she only killed him in self-defence after he tried to rape her. After the UAE president himself got involved, Sarah was set free and had to pay compensation instead. However, she was deported back to her country and her right to remain in the country was cancelled.[3]


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