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Saudi man gets 10 years, 2,000 lashes for tweeting atheism

Unrepentant 28-year-old posted 600 tweets denying the existence of God, ridiculing Quranic verses

Illustrative photo of a Muslim man reading the Quran  during the holy month of Ramadan (photo credit: Atta Kenare/AFP)
Illustrative photo of a Muslim man reading the Quran during the holy month of Ramadan (photo credit: Atta Kenare/AFP)

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — A court in Saudi Arabia has sentenced a man to 10 years in prison and 2,000 lashes for expressing his atheism in hundreds of Twitter posts.

Al-Watan online daily said Saturday that religious police in charge of monitoring social networks found more than 600 tweets denying the existence of God, ridiculing Quranic verses, accusing all prophets of lies and saying their teachings fueled hostilities.

It says the 28-year-old man admitted to being an atheist and refused to repent, saying that what he wrote reflected his own beliefs and that he had the right to express them. The report did not name the man.

The court also fined him 20,000 riyals, about $5,300.

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