Jeremy Corbyn has a message for David Cameron: Stop Saudi Arabia from crucifying a man arrested as a teenager

Matthew Champion@matthewchampion
Tuesday 29 September 2015 15:50

Jeremy Corbyn is delivering his inaugural conference speech as Labour leader.

The speech was trailed as Corbyn declaring his patriotism after concern about him not singing the national anthem.

In one early section talking about his British values he spoke about being a human rights activist.

Corbyn told conference in Brighton:

I've been standing up for human rights and challenging oppressive regimes for 30 years as a backbench MP, and before that as an individual activist, just like everyone else in this hall.

Just because I've become the leader of this party I'm not going to stop standing up on those issues or being that activist.

Then, in a direct appeal to the prime minister, he added:

So my first message is to David Cameron. I hope he's listening: Intervene now personally with the Saudi Arabian regime to stop the beheading and crucifixion of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, who is threatened with the death penalty for taking part in a demonstration at the age of 17.

As Corbyn notes, al-Nimr was arrested while at a Arab Spring-inspired protest in 2012, while a teenager.

He has been convicted of charges including belonging to a terrorist cell and attacking police, but human rights groups say he was tortured and forced to sign a false confession before being condemned to beheading and cruxifixction. A final appeal has been rejected and the sentence could be carried out any day.

Corbyn added:

We have to be very clear about what we stand for in human rights; a refusal to stand up is the kind of thing that really damages Britain's standing in the world.

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