by Ananda Kannangara
Foreign Employment Promotion Minister Dilan Perera yesterday assured that the Government was prepared to pay blood money to the parents of the victimised Saudi child at any moment to release the convicted Sri Lankan housemaid Rizana Nasik.
The Saudi Arabian King last week withheld the death sentence passed by the Daw Admi High Courts in Saudi Arabia against Rizana Nasik following a request by President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
According to Saudi law, the housemaid could now be pardoned only by the parents of the victimised child.
Nineteen-year old Rizana Nasik of Mutur was sentenced to death by a Saudi Court in February 2005 for strangling a four-month-old baby to death while being bottle-fed.
Minister Perera said according to the Sharia law, Rizana could be released if the dead child's parents gives a pardon for the victim.
According to Sri Lanka 's former Ambassador in Saudi Arabia Abdul Mohamed Marleen, when the case was taken up for hearing at the Daw Admi High Courts, the father of the dead child was also summoned before the court.
Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) chairman, Kingsley Ranawaka said that the Lankan Government has discussed this matter extensively with labour officials in Saudi Arabia , Lankan Foreign Ministry officials and legal professionals here to save Rizana's life.
Chairman Ranawaka said that the SLBFE had also pleaded with the Saudi Arabian Government for clemency for Rizana Nasik's life saying that she had committed the alleged crime when she was only 17.