[Deathpenalty]death penalty news-----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Fri Feb 4 21:29:48 CST 2005
Group vs. executions launched on Monday
A group that would vigorously campaign against the summary executions in
the city will be formally launched on Monday.
Integrated Bar of the Philippines-Cebu City Chapter President Democrito
Barcenas yesterday said that the launching of Multi-Alliance Against
Summary Executions will coincide with the start of the signature campaign
and symposia in schools and barangays.
MAASE will be composed of the IBP, other law organizations, alumni and
militant groups, as well as representatives from the church. Barcenas said
they also intend to enlist the media to the organization.
"We will continue to remind authorities that criminality cannot be solve
by another form of criminality and lawlessness can't be erased by adopting
lawless methods," said Barcenas, adding that, "violence will only achieve
peace in the cemetery."
Barcenas said they have also formed a legal committee that would look into
the possible administrative liability of public officials who encourage,
support and inspire the vigilante killings.
Barcenas explained that their move is "not a personal quarrel" between the
IBP and Mayor Tomas Osmea but merely based on principle. He said that
Osmeas earlier statement referring to the IBP as favoring criminals was a
blatant misrepresentation. "When you uphold the rule of law, it doesnt
mean that you are favoring a particular sector", he said.
In fact, Barcenas said, they immediately commended the Lapu-Lapu City
police for the arrest of 8 alleged members of the Philippine Benevolent
Missionaries Association who were found possessing high-powered firearms.
But he admitted that majority of Cebuanos might agree to summary killings
due to the failure of authorities to curb criminality.
"Since people are desperate for solutions, they are willing to make
shortcuts at the expense of the rule of law," Barcenas said.
(source: The Freeman)
Malaysia reveals executions: 358 hanged in 24 years
Malaysia has revealed that it executed 358 people by hanging in the past
24 years, parliamentary opposition leader Lim Kit Siang said Thursday.
Lim said he had received the statistics from Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad
Badawi, who is also Minister for Internal Security, in response to a
written question submitted in parliament.
Figures for the number of executions in Malaysia have rarely been
published, and media attempts to establish the number in recent years were
The death penalty is imposed in Malaysia for a number of offences from
murder and treason to drug trafficking, for which it is mandatory.
Lim, who leads the biggest opposition party in parliament, the Democratic
Action Party, said the prisons department had provided him with a
statistical breakdown of just 234 of the hangings.
This showed that 50 foreign nationals were hanged, including 7 from
Thailand, 8 from Hong Kong, 23 from the Philippines, 4 from Singapore, 2
from Indonesia and 1 each from Australia, Britain and Pakistan.
46 of them were hanged for drug offences.
Of 184 Malaysian citizens executed, 48 were from the indigenous Malay
majority, 102 were members of the ethnic Chinese minority and 15 were
ethnic Indians. Most of the executions - 129 - were also for drug
5 of the 234 people hanged were women.
12 of the executions were for offences under the Internal Security Act
(ISA), all between 1984 and 1993. Lim told AFP he could not immediately
account for the number of hangings for security offences in such a
The act, most widely known for the powers it gives the authorities to
detain people without trial, also prescribes the mandatory death penalty
for certain offences to be tried in court, including carrying firearms,
ammunition or explosives "in any security area".
The ISA was introduced by former British colonisers to fight a communist
insurgency in the 1950s, and has been used more recently to detain without
trial more than 80 suspected Islamic militants.
The number of executions overall, according to the limited figures
released by the prisons department, reached a peak of 31 in 1990 while
just 15 had been hanged since 2000. None were executed last year,
according to these statistics.
Lim said the period between the end of all appeals and the carrying out of
the sentence varied from less than a year to more than 4 years.
(source: Agence France Presse)
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