[Deathpenalty]death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Wed Jul 27 23:19:27 CDT 2005
Palestinian Authority executes convicted murderer
The Palestinian Authority executed a convicted murderer on Wednesday,
defying international calls to halt capital punishment as part of reforms
considered key to securing future Palestinian statehood.
An official statement said Raed al-Mughrabi, 32, was hanged in Gaza City's
Mughrabi was convicted of murder and robbery in 2001 and the execution was
approved by President Mahmoud Abbas, the statement said.
Last month, 3 men were hanged and a 4th was killed by a firing squad after
they confessed in a Gaza City court to murder. They were the 1st
executions carried out in Palestinian-ruled areas since 2001.
Abbas is under domestic pressure to curb crime that has run rampant in the
Gaza Strip and West Bank during 4-1/2 years of conflict with Israel.
The capital punishment issue is especially acute when it comes to dozens
of Palestinians jailed on charges of spying for Israel, a major crime in
tight-knit Arab society.
Palestinian officials said in April that planned executions of 15
convicted informers were suspended after complaints by the European Union,
the biggest aid donor to the Palestinians.
Human rights groups have complained of a lack of due process of law in the
judicial proceedings that have led to executions.
In its statement on Wednesday's hanging, the Palestinian Authority said
Mughrabi's case had gone through "all legal procedures" and he was tried
and executed "in accordance with criminal law and Islamic law".
Iran: End Juvenile Executions
Iran's execution of a juvenile offender last week violated international
law, Human Rights Watch said today in letters to the president and head of
2 youths, aged 18 and 19, were put to death on July 19 after they were
found guilty of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old boy some 14 months
earlier. One of the youths was 17 at the time of the offense.
"Death is an inhumane punishment, particularly for someone under 18 at the
time of his crimes," said Hadi Ghaemi, Iran researcher for Human Rights
Watch. "All but a handful of countries forbid such executions. Iran should
Before the 2 youths were put to death, each also received 228 lashes for
theft, disturbing public order, and consuming alcohol.
The Convention on the Rights of the Child and the International Covenant
on Civil and Political Rights prohibit the imposition of the death penalty
for crimes committed before the age of 18.
These treaties also prohibit the use of torture and cruel, inhuman, or
degrading punishments. Iran has ratified both treaties.
Iran is thought to have executed at least 4 other juvenile offenders in
2004, and at least 30 juvenile offenders are on the country's death row.
Human Rights Watch has confirmed the names and ages at the time of offense
of five juvenile offenders under sentence of death in Iran: Milad
Bakhtiari, 17 years old; Hussein Haghi, 16 years old; Hussein Taranj, 17
years old; Farshad Saeedi, 17 years old; Saeed Khorrami, 16 years old.
Elsewhere in the world, only China, the Democratic Republic of Congo,
Pakistan, and the United States are known to have put juvenile offenders
to death in the past 5 years. The United States executed 9 juvenile
offenders during this period; the other countries are each known to have
put one juvenile offender to death. The U.S. Supreme Court declared the
juvenile death penalty unconstitutional in March 2005.
Iran's Majlis has for 4 years considered legislation that would amend the
civil code to prohibit executions for crimes committed under the age of
eighteen. Human Rights Watch, which opposes capital punishment in all
circumstances, urged Irans leadership to support the change and to
prohibit the imposition of amputation, flogging, and stoning as criminal
To view this document on the Human Rights Watch web site, please visit:
(source: Human Rights Watch)
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