[Deathpenalty] death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Sat Feb 24 20:07:38 UTC 2007
Activists around the world urged to help stop execution of Iraqi women
People around the world are being called on to help stop the execution of
3 Iraqi women who have been sentenced to hang March 3.
Wassan Talib, age 31, Zainab Fadhil, age 25, and Liqa Omar Muhammad, age
26, were accused of participating in the resistance against the U.S.
occupation of Iraq and sentenced to death by the Supreme Iraqi Criminal
Court. The 3 women, who denied the charges against them, were prevented
from seeing a lawyer and tried in violation of the Geneva Convention.
The 3 women are being held at Baghdads Al-Kadhimiya Prison. Talib has a
3-year-old daughter imprisoned with her, and Liqa has a 1-year-old
daughter she gave birth to in prison.
The World Tribunal on Iraq and the BRussels Tribunal Executive Committee
launched an international campaign to demand the release of the women.
"The United States and its local conspirators, in creating hundreds of
thousands of widows and reducing life in Iraq to a struggle for bare
survival have placed women in the crosshairs and now on the gallows,"
organizers of the 2 groups said in a statement.
"We celebrate the numberless acts of resistance of Iraqi women, whether
their resilience in the face of a culture of rape, torture and murder by
U.S. and Iraqi forces, their fortitude in continuing to give life amid
state-sponsored genocide, their dignity as they try to maintain a
semblance of normality for their children and families, their courage in
burying their husbands, sons, daughter or brothers, or in direct action
against an illegal and failed military occupation."
The groups call for protests in front of every Iraqi embassy in the world.
And they ask that individuals call and write to local and national
newspapers to pressure human rights groups to intervene and to write to
the Iraqi authorities to demand that the immoral and illegal execution be
halted and the women released.
The Iraqi government cant charge anyone with taking part in the
resistance, the groups say. Citing a 1982 resolution of the U.N. General
Assembly, they say international law affirms "the legitimacy of the
struggle of peoples for independence, territorial integrity, national
unity and liberation from colonial and foreign domination and foreign
occupation by all available means, including armed struggle."
People are asked to send faxes and e-mails with the subject line: "Re: The
Imminent execution of Wassan Talib, Zainab Fadhil and Liqa Omar Muhammad"
Minister of Justice Hashim Al-Shilbi: head-minister at iraq-justice.org
Prime Minster Nouri Al-Maliki: iraqigov at yahoo.com
President Jalal Talabani: www.iraqipresidency.net
Intl Committee of the Red Cross: 011-41-22-733-2057 press.gva at icrc.org
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: 011-41-22-917-9008/
tb-petitions at ohchr.org
UN Representant in Iraq Said Arikat: 212-963-2800 arikat at un.org
IRIN News Agency: 011-971-4-368-1024 pat at irnnews.org
Amnesty International: 011-44-20-7956-1157 cjurgens at amnesty.org
Al-Jazeera: 011-974-442-6865 press.int at aljazeera.net
Reuters: 011-44-20-7542-4064 Eileen.wise at reuters.com
BBC: 011-44-20-7557-1254/Michael.grade at bbc.co.uk
(source: Worker's World)
Oppose martial law for Baghdad
Human Rights Watch warned new martial law provisions for Baghdad could
open the door to abuse by the military.
In a statement issued Friday, the organization said Iraqi Prime Minister
Nouri al-Maliki's plan to curb escalating violence in the Iraqi capital
grants military commanders sweeping powers to arrest people and restrict
basic freedoms of speech and association.
"The security situation in Baghdad is dire but giving the military free
rein to violate the basic rights of Iraqis is not the answer," said Sarah
Leah Whitson, the group's Middle East director. "International law
strictly limits the restrictions a government can place on fundamental
rights during a public emergency."
The martial law provisions announced by the Baghdad's commander of
military operations have no time limits nor are there any details on how
the regulations will be implemented.
The decree also provides for broad use of the death penalty, a punishment
Human Rights Watch opposes.
Honor crimes in Yemen: between execution and stigma
In the framework of the Program of Eradicating Violence against Women,
supervised by the Arab Sisters Forum for Human Rights, a workshop on
"Honor Crimes in Yemen" was organized Thursday.
The workshop aimed to discuss the proliferation of honor crimes in Yemen,
the social and economic conditions and the cultural orientations, which
lead to committing such crimes and their bad impacts on individuals and
Dr. Adel al-Sharjabi, Professor of Sociology at Sana'a University, who
presented a current study on honor crimes, has not included any accurate
figures of the issue.
He said the society as well as the police in Yemen practice different
types of violence against women under the pretext of honor crimes, calling
for reconsidering the legislative structure that makes women owned by her
He further mentioned that there are many women, who were shot by the
police when hunting for a man in the company of a woman, and there are
numerous cases of suicides, killings and drowning that require
reconsidering the social heritage.
Al-Sharjabi noted: "We don't have enough and accurate information about
honor crimes due to the lack of readiness on the part of citizens to
discuss honor-related issues.
Despite the existence of several honor crimes in Yemen, habits and
traditions and the Yemeni law seem to be sentimental with women.
Lawyer Nabil al-Mohammadi mentioned Article 232 of the penalties law that
approved of execution as the penalty for adultery after being accepted by
the husband, the brother or the father. The law appears to be a violation
against the Islamic Sharia, the international conventions of human rights
and the principles of the Yemeni constitution.
The Law stipulates that if a husband killed his wife along with the one
committing adultery with her, he would not be executed but might receive a
light punishment: either to be fined to be jailed not more than 6 months.
The legal justification behind this is the state of anger due to be
situation by the husband or anyone who will not be able to control his
nerves when seeing such a kind of crime.
The husband might be shocked when seeing his wife committing adultery, the
murder case was not previously planned, and therefore there is no an
interval between adultery and murder.
Articles 274 and 275 of the Penalties Law state 6-month imprisonment for
committing adultery while Article 273 of the law defines such a kind of
crime as any act necessitating a state of nakedness.
Some legalists held the view that the legal changes come against interests
of women and the public property doesnt interfere with the text of the law
and that the public and private properties may be used in implementing
Dr. Fuad al-Salahi says: "We have to pose at the rights and liberties of
women, particularly as the domain of the law came into place according to
the traditional culture."
"A legislative work is a must to drive us forward regarding women issues
and the texts of the law may contradict the teachings of Islam which
stipulate the testimony of four eyewitnesses for sentencing the criminal,"
For his part, Ali Saleh Undersecretary of the Ministry of Social Affairs
and Labor said there is a remarkable development in the Yemeni law and
some of the texts were amended with respect to honor crimes.
The study on honor crimes, recently conducted, does not cover accurate
scores, and it seems to be merely composed of opinions that are far away
from the problem. It contained an account of male and female mortality
rate, which is absolutely irrelevant from honor crimes.
Crimes of honor in Yemen remain far away from courts and the media means
due to the existence of the traditional culture that still control all the
The terrible increase in suicide cases reflects fearing the scandal more
than fearing penalties. So an authentic study based on real scores is
recommended to diagnose the issue and suggest any possible solutions and
(source: Yemen Times)
Husband blames gov't for wife's death sentence in Kuwait
The husband of an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) sentenced to die by
hanging in Kuwait said he should not have listened to Philippine
government officials who advised him to keep silent regarding his wifes
"Lalo nilang pinabayaan e. Dapat sana lalo kaming nag-ingay," (They
neglected the case more. We should have raised our concerns in public)."
said Lolito Dalibutan, Ranario's common-law husband.
In 2005, Migrante International reported that 4 OFWs were executed in
Saudi Arabia. They were Sergio Aldana, Miguel Fernandez Jr., Wilfredo
Bautista and Antonio Alvesa.
Migrante also reported that in September 2005, Marilou Ranario, an OFW
domestic, was convicted by a Kuwaiti lower court and sentenced to death by
hanging allegedly for killing her employer, Najat Mahmoud Faraj Mobarak,
on Jan. 11, 2005.
The Kuwaiti Court of Appeals upheld the decision of the lower court meting
out the death penalty on Ranario on Feb. 17, 2006.
The final judgment on Ranarios case will still be issued by the Cassation
Court, Kuwait's high tribunal.
Migrante said it is Ranario who should be given justice because she was
Media reports cited court records showing that Ranario only meant to
"harm" her employer who had abused her; that was after Ranario allegedly
overheard her Kuwaiti employer telling another person of her (the
employer's) plan to arrange for some men to rape the maid.
Ranario was a public school teacher in the Philippines before she left for
Kuwait to work as a domestic helper 3 years ago.
The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced in January that 6 OFWs
charged with offenses punishable by death had their sentences reduced to
jail terms. The 6 are Guen Aguilar, Zenaida Taulbee, Ronilo Arandia,
Fernie Salarza, Melvin Obejera and Ma. Fe Cruzado.
Maita Santiago, Migrante International secretary-general, welcomed the
news but challenged the government to save all OFWs in death row and to
act pro-actively to prevent abuses committed against OFWs.
"Di dapat umasa sa awa lagi ng Kuwait" (We should not always rely on the
mercy of Kuwait), Santiago said. "Dapat comprehensively i-address ang mga
paglabag sa mga karapatan ng OFWs, lalo na sa Middle East" (The government
should comprehensively address violations on the rights of OFWs especially
in the Middle East), she added.
Ranario is one of the 30 OFWs in death row that Migrante reported in 2005.
DFA spokesperson Claro Cristobal said he could not give the exact number
of OFWs in death row as it is a "fast running" figure.
Ranario's family sought the help of Migrante because they did not see any
development in the government's handling of her case.
Dalibutan said he gets updates on his wife's case only from Migrante.
"Pag tumawag po 'yung hipag ko dito (sa Department of Foreign Affairs),
minsan wala (ang taong kakausapin namin)" (When my sister-in-law calls the
DFA, sometimes the person handling my wife's case is indisposed.), he
complained. O kaya sasabihin nila wala pang update" (Or they just tell us
that there is no update).
Cristobal debunked Dalibutan's accusations saying that the DFA has a
record of assistance especially legal service given to Ranario and her
"The Philippine government has never been negligent in providing support
to Ranario and family," he said, adding that they have not missed a single
hearing in the lower and appellate courts.
He also said the government filed a petition for a review and reversal of
the lower court decision.
Dalibutan regretted following the advice of DFA officials that they keep
silent on her wifes case. "Lalo nilang pinabayaan e. Dapat sana lalo
kaming nag-ingay" (They neglected the case more. We should have raised our
concerns in public.), he said.
"Manahimik daw kami dahil pag nakulitan baka di daw gawin ang para sa
asawa ko" (We were told that if they become annoyed with us they might not
do what they had to do for my wife.), he lamented.
They agreed, he said, because they were promised that the government will
act on his wife's case.
Santiago said the DFA even brought Ranarios parents to Kuwait last year
for "photo opportunities" to make the government look good.
After the visit, Dalibutan said, Ranario's parents were given money which
they used to buy 3 pigs and a carabao.
"Hindi po namin kailangan 'yung tulong na yun," (We don't need that kind
of assistance.) he said. "Ang pinakaimportante na tulong nila 'yung
makauwi po ang asawa ko hindi po 'yung ganitong halaga dahil kahit paano
nabubuhay kami," (The most important assistance they can offer us is to
bring my wife back homenot the money they gave us because we are able to
survive somehow.) he added.
The husband also recalled that Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait Ricardo
Endaya promised them that he will bring Ranario home when he returns to
the country in December 2006.
"Nasaan na 'yung pangako nya na isasama na niya asawa ko?" (Where is his
promise that he will bring my wife back?), he asked.
Santiago recalled that Vice President Noli de Castro, who is also the
presidential adviser for OFWs, appealed for the commutation of Ranarios
sentence to life imprisonment during his visit to Kuwait in March 2006.
The vice-president's appeal, the migrant leader said, was contrary to the
wishes of Ranarios family that she be released.
Ranario used to help her driver husband by working as a teacher. Dalibutan
recalled that his wife was forced to work as a domestic abroad to earn
money for the education of their 2 children and for their dream wedding.
Dalubitan said that they also planned to buy a jeepney.
It has been 3 years since Ranario left to work in the Middle East and a
year and a half since her conviction. Though uncertain about the future,
Dalubitan is still hopeful that they will be together again.
If her wife would be set free, he said, "Ayaw kong maghiwalay pa kami
ulit. Kung nasaan ako, gusto ko nandun din sila (ng mga anak namin)." (I
do not want to be far from her again. I want them to be with me wherever I
But whenever he thinks about their current predicament, he cannot help but
feel disappointed over the governments handling of his wife's case.
"Talaga naman pong pinapabayaan sya," he said, "Yun po ang malaking
kagagawan nila, nasaan na 'yung pangako nila?" (Her case was really
neglected. That is really the fault of the government. What happened to
Death sentences meted out
The Ethiopian Supreme Court has upheld death sentences on five people
convicted of attacks that killed 29 people and wounded 18 others during
the past 11 years, state television reported late on Thursday.
"The criminal bench of the Federal Supreme Court upheld death sentence on
Mohamed Mahamoud Farah, Mohammed Hassan Mahmoud, Ibrahim Hussein Nalaye,
Mohammed Almi Liben and Mohammed Ibrahim," the television report said.
"(They) were convicted of terrorist attacks at various times and places in
Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa since 1996."
A sixth person was sentenced to 25 years in jail.
The court said it did not find "extenuating circumstances" to mitigate the
rulings passed by the lower court.
The court named Farah as the ring leader and coordinator of the Addis
Ababa and Dire Dawa bombings.
"The accused were involved in bomb explosions in different parts of the
country including in hotels (and) passenger buses," the court said. "They
were also involved in the attempt on the life of former minister of
communication Abdulmejid Hussein."
Death sentences in Ethiopia are normally carried out after they are
confirmed by the head of state.
(source: SomaliNet News)
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