Saudi Arabia executed 37 people, most of them Shiites — or people who practice Shia Islam — and publicly pinned one of the bodies and its severed head to a pole for terrorism-related crimes on Tuesday.
Ratified by Saudi Arabian King Salman, the executions took place across the country and were in accordance with Islamic Law, according to the country’s Interior Ministry who used language that indicated they were all beheadings.
Those who were executed were found guilty by the Specialized Criminal Court of attacking security installations, killing a number of security officials and working with enemy organizations against the country’s interest.
“The death penalty was implemented on a number of criminals for adopting extremist terrorist ideologies and forming terrorist cells to corrupt and disrupt security as well as spreading chaos and provoking sectarian strike,” said the Saudi Press Agency in a tweet.
Of the 37 executed, 34 were identified as Shiites based on the names of those executed released by the Interior Ministry. The executions are likely to raise further tension between Sunni-led Saudi Arabia and Shiite-led Iran, while also emboldening the United State’s pressure against the Iranian leadership.