Filipino worker executed as effort to raise 'blood money' falls short

Updated 30 December 2015
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Filipino worker executed as effort to raise 'blood money' falls short

RIYADH: A Filipino worker who was found guilty of murdering a Sudanese man six years ago was executed on Tuesday in the national capital, the Ministry of Interior said.
Joselito Lidasan Zapanta's execution was carried out after efforts led by the Philippine government to raise the $1 million "blood money" demanded by his victim's family fell short.
Zapanta, a 35-year-old tile-setter, was convicted of murder and robbery by a Riyadh court in 2010 for killing Sudanese national Saleh Imam Ibrahim with a hammer following a dispute in 2009, the Interior Ministry said in a statement published by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
In Manila, Charles Jose, spokesman of the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), said Ibrahim’s family refused to sign an affidavit of forgiveness that would have spared Zapanta the death penalty unless it was paid 48 million pesos ($1 million), setting a two-week deadline earlier this month for payment.
The family of Zapanta and the Philippine government managed to raise only 23 million pesos ($488,000)..
Jose said in a statement that the government “has undertaken and exhausted all diplomatic and legal efforts, and extended consular and legal assistance to preserve the life of Mr. Zapanta.”
He said the government has arranged and funded the jail visits of Zapanta’s relatives at the Malaz Central Prison and that the the DFA shall continue to extend assistance to Zapanta’s family.
Jose took the occasion to appeal to all Filipinos working overseas "to follow the local laws of their host countries at all times and to avoid involvement in criminal activities.”
The plight of Filipino workers overseas is a sensitive issue in the Philippines. About a tenth of the country’s 100 million people work abroad, including around 2.2 million in Saudi Arabia.
Jose said that 79 Filipinos are on death row in various countries, including 41 in Malaysia and 27 in Saudi Arabia. (Additional input from Agencies)

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Saudi aid center KSRelief highlights humanitarian work at Chile conference

Al-Rabeeah praised KSRelief’s work in war zones and areas suffering from grave humanitarian threats, with the center having worked across 79 such regions in its history, most significantly in Yemen. (SPA)
Updated 5 sec ago
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Saudi aid center KSRelief highlights humanitarian work at Chile conference

  • Al-Rabeeah talked about the pioneering work done by the center and its staff as part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 program

RIYADH: The general supervisor of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief), Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, has highlighted the work of his organization at a symposium during the Medical International Conference held in Santiago.
More than 650 senior doctors and medical practitioners from 57 countries were invited to take part in the conference
Al-Rabeeah talked about the pioneering work done by the center and its staff as part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 program, and how medical advancement and humanitarian aid provision was at the forefront of the government’s plan to diversify Saudi Arabia.

He raised the example of KSRelief’s handling of multiple cases of conjoined (“Siamese”) twins over the years, and how as a result of investment and research, Saudi doctors had successfully separated 47 pairs.
He also praised KSRelief’s work in war zones and areas suffering from grave humanitarian threats, with the center having worked across 79 such regions in its history, most significantly in Yemen.
He noted that the Kingdom had undertaken a number of initiatives, including a program to rehabilitate child soldiers recruited by the Houthi militias currently fighting coalition forces in the country, and the Saudi Project for Landmine Clearance in Yemen, which has removed more than 50,000 of the devices so far.
He also highlighted plans to establish an artificial limb center to provide prosthetics for Yemenis who have lost limbs in the conflict.
He concluded his speech by stressing the importance of volunteer work and its major role in supporting the Kingdom’s humanitarian work, praising the efforts of those who sacrificed their time and resources to carry out KSRelief’s objectives.