6-Year-Old Beheaded by Islamic Activist for Following Different Form of Islam
Boy dragged from mother and 'beheaded' with broken glass bottle on the street
A 6-year-old boy has been dragged from his mother by an Islamic "activist" and "beheaded" on the street with a broken glass bottle because his family follows a different branch of Islam.
The incident took place in Saudi Arabia when the child, Zakaria Al-Jaber, was in a taxi with his mother on their way to the shrine of Prophet Muhammad in Medina.
An unknown man reportedly stopped the cab in traffic and asked the mother if she was Shia Muslim, which she confirmed they were.
Witnesses report that a few minutes after this conversation, another car forced the taxi to stop and the young boy was dragged from the vehicle to an area near a coffee shop in the Al-Tilal neighborhood.
A man then smashed a glass bottle and slit the child's throat with a shard of glass before stabbing him repeatedly as both his mother and a nearby police officer attempted to stop the brutal attack, reports TMV.
The mother, who had unsuccessfully tried to stop the man, collapsed out of trauma.
Onlookers say a policeman who happened to be stationed nearby had also attempted to stop the man from attacking the child but was unsuccessful in saving the boy.
The officer was able to restrain the man until police backup arrived and arrested the suspect.
Shia Rights Watch has claimed the boy was killed on Thursday in an act of sectarian violence.
The group said that an unknown man had asked the mother if she was Shia moments before the attack happened.
Shia is a branch of Islam which holds that the Islamic prophet Muhammad designated Ali ibn Abi Talib as his successor and the Imam (leader) after him, most notably at the event of Ghadir Khumm, but was prevented from the caliphate as a result of the incident at Saqifah.
This view primarily contrasts with that of Sunni Islam, whose adherents believe that Muhammad did not appoint a successor and consider Abu Bakr, who they claim was appointed Caliph through a Shura, i.e. community consensus in Saqifa, to be the first rightful Caliph after the Prophet.
Shia Islam is the world's second largest branch of Islam
In a statement, Shia Rights Watch said:
"The Saudi Shia community came together today in mourning and to show solidarity with the parents.
"The community also reported this incident is a result of ongoing violations and lack of protection by the Saudi authority toward its Shia population."
Shia Rights Watch, whose headquarters is in Washington D.C., said the beheading must be addressed as soon as possible.
The group added:
"Shia Rights Watch, other human rights NGOs and activists have long advocated for the rights of this minority through campaigns, UN and other entities.
"However, the population still suffers because of the lack of international commitment to end such violations.
"Beheading of a young child in such manner must be addressed ASAP."