Manama: A Kuwaiti father is hoping for a last minute miracle that will save his son from the death penalty.
Faleh Al Dhufairi, 24, was given the capital sentence by a Saudi court this week after he was found guilty of killing a Saudi man last year.
According to his family, Faleh accompanied his mother and sister on a pilgrimage (Haj) in November. It was the trip of a lifetime for the family, especially the mother, the family said.
However, he waded into an intense argument with a Saudi man in Makkah, pulled out a knife, and stabbed him. The victim died later at the hospital and Faleh was arrested. His mother and sister, under the shock, returned home without performing the much-coveted pilgrimage.
“It was his destiny to run into the Saudi man and to have a fight with him,” Malab Al Dhufairi, the father, said. “My son tried his best to avoid the argument and pleaded with the man to stop the disagreement as Muslims are not allowed to get into any verbal dispute or quarrel during the pilgrimage. However, the other man insisted on continuing the row until my son stabbed him. When Faleh saw the victim on the floor, he realized the extent of what he did and tried to help. He took him to hospital, but he died there. My son went to Haj to seek God’s mercy and forgiveness, but he ended up in a tragedy,” the father told Kuwaiti news site Sabr.
Malab denied claims that the Saudi victim’s family had demanded blood money to forgive Faleh.
“Media reports that the family had asked for SR30 million to forgive Faleh are not true and lack credibility. We did offer blood money, but the father refused and insisted on the execution of my son.”
The father said that the case would be reviewed by the Saudi Court of Appeals amid hopes that the verdict would be changed.
Online comments, mainly by Kuwaitis, mostly sympathised with the family and prayed for a softer sentence.
Advice included prayers and pressure with the help of influential families or tribes on the Saudi family to accept blood money and allow Faleh to go home.