Anonymous Attacks Several Saudi Arabian Websites, Brings Focus to a Teen’s Execution #OpNimr

In taking a stand and making a direct protest against the death sentence handed in 2012 to a 17-year old teenager Mohammed al-Nimr, Anonymous has crippled multiple Saudi Arabian government websites.

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr // Facebook
Ali Mohammed al-Nimr // Facebook

It is a case described as “a possible breach of international law,” by a group of UN human rights experts.

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr was arrested and sentenced to death after being accused of partaking in pro-democracy demonstrations during the Arab Spring of 2012. At the time, Nimr was 17.

In joining the international outcry against the sentence of execution by beheading and crucifixion, hacktivist group Anonymous has taken down multiple Saudi Government websites with an operation called #OpNimr. The hashtag has since gone viral and adopted by activists around the world.


Anonymous announced #OpNimr by inundating government websites with DDoS attacks and taking them offline, along with the following video that demanded the release of Nimr.

The statement released on the video said:

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, an innocent young teenage boy has been sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia and we will not stand by and watch.

“Hundreds of innocent people die each year because of the Saudi Government, and they (the Saudi Government) will now be punished for their actions,” Anonymous said.

Nimr’s final appeal against his execution was dismisbsed by Saudi courts in September 2014 for his part in attending a rally during the Arab Spring.

At the time, a Saudi court judgement read:

“[Nimr] encouraged pro-democracy protests [using] a Blackberry.”

“Naturally, the sentence was appealed but the appeal hearing was held in secret and apparently dismissed,” added Anonymous in their video message.

A second video was released by Anonymous days after their first, this time directly addressing King Salman and the Saudi Arabian Government.

“13 judges have already approved the death sentence of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, meaning only King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has to approve it,” Anonymous said.

We cannot and will not allow this to happen. The Ministry of Justice was taken offline a few days ago, and we will continue to do this to other government websites.

Some of the websites taken down include:

  • The Ministry of Justice (
  • The Ministry of Civil Service (
  • The General Administration of Education (
  • Saudi Airlines (

A complete list of the targeted websites has been published by Anonymous in Pastebin, here.

“We hope you listen to us this time and release the young man. You will be treated as a virus, and we are the cure,” concluded Anonymous in their statement.

Several activist groups and human rights groups including Amnesty International have claimed that Nimr was not granted the means to a lawyer and that he was forced into signing a “confession” after suffering torture by prison officers.

At the time, a Saudi court judgement read:

[Nimr] encouraged pro-democracy protests [using] a Blackberry.

Amnesty International recently released a report that proclaims Saudi Arabia as “one of the most prolific executioners in the world.” Between January 1986 and June 2015, at least 2,200 known people were executed, half of whom were foreign nationals. Executions were carried out for “crimes” such as witchcraft, sorcery and adultery.

According to news reports, Saudi Arabia will imminently behead and then crucify Al Nimr, now 20, today or later this week.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

Samburaj is the contributing editor at Hacked and keeps tabs on science, technology and cyber security.