Short jail term for Saudi cleric who 'beat young daughter to death'

Online activists in Saudi Arabia are calling for harsher punishments for child abuse after reports that a prominent cleric received only a light sentence after confessing to the beating to death of his five-year-old daughter.

The social media campaign gaining momentum today is the latest attempt to use the internet to pressure the kingdom’s ultra-conservative rulers.

Saudi media reports say Fayhan al-Ghamdi, a frequent guest on Islamic TV programmes, was arrested in November on charges of killing the girl.

Saudi media say he was freed last week after serving a short prison term and agreeing to pay US$50,000 (€36,651) in “blood money” to avoid a possible death sentence.

The money is thought to have been offered to the girl’s mother or other relatives.

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