Maid Beheaded in Saudi Arabia

Parents of Rizana Nafeek in 2007. (Eranga Jayawardena/AP)

** FILE ** Mohammad Razeena, left, and Mohammad Sultan Nafeek, parents of Rizana Nafeek, a Sri Lankan housemaid sentenced to be beheaded after a baby died in her care in Saudi Arabia, look on in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in this July 16, 2007, file photo. Five months ago, officials here were not even informed when four Sri Lankan men working in the Arab kingdom were beheaded and strung up in a public square for armed robbery. Saving Rizana Nafeek, 19, from the same fate has become one of the most urgent issues in a country where nearly everyone has worked abroad or had a relative employed overseas. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena, File)

A Sri Lankan maid has been beheaded in Saudi Arabia for killing a child in her care in 2005. Rizana Nafeek was convicted in 2007 of smothering 4-month-old Naif al-Quthaibi after an argument with the child’s mother, but supporters say that Nafeek was only 17 at the time of the child’s death, which would make her execution a violation of international child rights. Supporters also claimed that her initial confession was made under duress and without lawyers or linguistic assistance. Both Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have criticized Saudi authorities for the handling of her case.