As the U.S. and U.K. push for Saudi Arabia to increase oil production to offset a rise in global energy prices amid sanctions on Russia, the kingdom on Saturday announced it had executed 81 people — the country’s largest mass execution in decades. Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of Democracy for the Arab World Now, says the muted criticism of Saudi abuses reveals a double standard when it comes to how Western countries deal with the absolute monarchy, which has been waging a brutal assault on neighboring Yemen for almost seven years with U.S. support. If the U.S. wants the world to oppose Russia’s brutal war in Ukraine, “then it’s got to stop supporting the war in Yemen,” says Whitson, who adds that disparate coverage of the wars in Ukraine and Yemen point to “inherent racism” in Western media.
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