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Execution row: Bahrain joins Saudi Arabia in severing ties with Iran

Saudi Arabia and Bahrain have severed diplomatic ties with Iran over the storming of the Saudi embassy in Tehran following the kingdom's execution of a prominent Shia cleric.

Sudan has expelled Iran's ambassador and the United Arab Emirates is cutting the number of Iranian diplomats it allows to be in the country,

Iran's Supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned Saudi Arabia that it will face "divine retribution" after officials executed Nimr al-Nimr.

Saudi executed al-Nimr alongside 46 others in relation to alleged 'terrorism' offences.

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Ban Ki Moon 'deeply dismayed' over Saudi executions

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon has said he is "deeply dismayed" about the executions of 47 people, including cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, carried out by Saudi Arabia.

UN Secretary-General has urged calm following the execution of 47 people by Saudi Arabia. Credit: Reuters

In a statement, his spokesman said:

Sheik al-Nimr and a number of the other prisoners executed had been convicted following trials that raised serious concerns over the nature of the charges and the fairness of the process.

The Secretary-General had raised the case of Sheikh al-Nimr with the leadership of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on a number of occasions.

The Secretary-General reiterates his strong stance against the death penalty. He points to the growing movement in the international community for the abolition of capital punishment and urges Saudi Arabia to commute all death sentences imposed in the Kingdom.

– Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General

Ban Ki Moon also urged calm and restraint in reaction to the execution of Sheikh Nimr after demonstrators attacked the Saudi Embassy in Tehran.

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