[Deathpenalty]death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Thu Feb 24 09:39:26 CST 2005
Arroyo: Death penalty 'only if required by the times'
The death penalty will be implemented "only if absolutely required by the
times," President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said, as she did not appear keen
on implementing it because jails in the Philippines are a "fate worse than
"In fact, we were able to solve the kidnapping problem without resorting
to death penalty," she told a news conference in Malacaang.
Asked if her position on the death penalty would be affected by the recent
kidnapping case against former actor and congressman Dennis Roldan, the
President said, "You know, given our conditions in jail, that is a fate
worse than death if [he] would stay there forever."
A day earlier, Arroyo granted a 90-day reprieve to 14 death row convicts.
Arroyo spokesman Ignacio Bunye defended the reprieve, saying this did not
include persons convicted of drug trafficking or kidnapping.
"Based on her past pronouncements, the President is implementing a
selective moratorium. For cases other than illegal drugs or kidnapping,
the President is prepared to consider granting reprieve," he said on
(source: INQ7 News)
Briton Appeals Against Beheading Death Sentence
A former British student with Al-Qaida links today began his appeal
against conviction and the death sentence for murdering a Western
journalist in Pakistan.
Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, 29, from Wanstead, East London, is on death row
in Karachi for the kidnapping and beheading of Wall Street Journal
reporter Daniel Pearl 3 years ago.
Pearl, an American was abducted while researching a story on Islamic
While Sheikh was sentenced to death 3 accomplices received life sentences.
The Sindh High Court began hearing both the appeals of four convicted men,
and the governments application for the death penalty for the 3 sentenced
to life imprisonment, said state prosecutor Raja Qureshi.
None of the defendants appeared at the hearing.
Abdul Waheed Katpar, Sheikhs lawyer, said he questioned the validity of
evidence used to convict his client.
The appeals process has been delayed by repeated postponements sought by
defence lawyers citing engagements in other cases.
The next hearing was set for March 2.
2 other militants who were wanted in the Pearl case were killed in
shoot-outs with security forces last year.
Sheikh, the son of a clothes merchant was a contemporary of former England
cricket captain Nasser Hussain at the private Forest School, in
Snaresbrook, east London.
He dropped out of studies at the London School of Economics
Sheikh was arrested by Indian police in 1994, accused of kidnapping 3
Britons and an American.
In 1999, while serving a prison sentence for terrorist offences, an Indian
Airlines plane was hijacked to then Taliban controlled Afghanistan.
In exchange for the 155 hostages on the plane, Omar Sheikh was freed from
(source: The Scotsman)
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