[Deathpenalty] death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at smu.edu
Sat Sep 10 13:18:55 CDT 2011
2 drug smugglers hanged in Iran----2 drug traffickers on a death sentence were
hung on Saturday, putting their death penalty tally at 186, although rights
groups say it is much higher
2 convicted drug traffickers were hanged on Saturday in a prison in the
northern city of Sari, the ISNA news agency reported.
The report did not identify either of those executed.
The latest hangings bring to 186 the number of executions reported in Iran so
far this year, according to an AFP tally based on media and official reports.
Iranian media reported 179 hangings last year but international human rights
groups say the actual number was much higher, ranking the Islamic republic
second only to China in the number of people it executed in 2010.
Tehran says the death penalty is essential to maintain law and order, and that
it is applied only after exhaustive judicial proceedings.
Murder, rape, armed robbery, drug trafficking and adultery are among the crimes
punishable by death in Iran.
(source: Agence France-Presse)
Iraqi Bill To Force President To Sign Death Sentences
A leading member of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's political party said
a draft law is being prepared that would make it obligatory for the president
to sign death sentences, RFE/RL's Radio Free Iraq (RFI) reports.
Hussein al-Assadi told RFI that his bloc has halted a judicial procedure
against President Jalal Talabani and decided to instead pass this draft law
that would force him to sign outstanding death sentences within 15 days.
He added that he believes all of the political parties in parliament will
approve the legislation and make it law.
Talabani has thus far refused to sign court-ordered death sentences which can
therefore not be carried out.
Several deputies from the State of Law bloc have accused Talabani of violating
the constitution by refusing to sign the execution orders for two officials
from Saddam Hussein's government: former Defense Minister Sultan Hashim and
ex-Army chief Hussein Rashid, both of whom were sentenced by Iraq's Supreme
Al-Assadi said that if the draft law is adopted it would be retroactive and
allow Justice Ministry officials to carry out the previously issued death
sentences without seeking the president's approval.
Talabani has refused to sign the death sentences because he is personally
opposed to capital punishment. He is a signatory to an international document
against death sentences.
Judge Abdul Sattar al-Bairaqdar, a spokesman for Iraq's Supreme Judiciary
Council, said the number of death sentences awaiting Talabani's approval is
more than 500, including those issued by the Supreme Criminal Court.
Talabani also refused to sign the death sentence for Saddam Hussein in 2006 but
delegated his powers to his vice president so that the execution could take
(source: Radio Free Europe)
TIFF: Herzog decries capital punishment at “Abyss” premiere
Acclaimed director Werner Herzog came out strongly against capital punishment
at the premiere of his anticipated doc Into the Abyss in Toronto last night,
telling attendees that no one from his generation who remembered the Nazi era
could support the death penalty.
Herzog was met by a standing ovation as he took to the stage at the packed
Ryerson Theatre for the premiere of his film, which launched on the 1st day of
the Toronto International Film Festival.
The director told the crowd he wanted to make his position on the death
sentence clear from the start. “I’m not an advocate of capital punishment,” he
said. “I’m against it, but I don’t even have an argument – I have a story; the
story of Nazi Germany.”
Herzog pointed to the huge numbers of people executed by the state during the
Nazi reign of Germany – people executed for their religion, for being
handicapped, or for being foreigners.
“No one from my generation, none of my peers, is for capital punishment,” he
added. “It’s as simple as that.”
As for the inmates he had spoken to on death row: “None of them are monsters.
The crimes are monstrous, but people are human beings.”
Herzog said that he was continuing to shoot material for the TV version of Into
the Abyss, which will air on Investigation Discovery in the U.S. next year, and
said that yesterday [Wednesday] he had been in Livingston, Texas, filming a man
on death row who had killed a police officer. “It’s kind of grim work,” he
Of the series, Herzog said each episode of the TV version would be more focused
“on one single person, and only a little bit on the crime,” adding that the
overall series would be “much more coherent” than the film.
He also added that, despite the heaviness of talking with so many victims and
murderers, it had not really changed his life. “When you film, you have just 50
minutes with an inmate, so you have to perform,” he explained. “But when you’re
in the editing room, it’s then that the weight is on you.”
One side-effect of the intense filming: “Both Joe [Bini, the film's editor] and
I had given up smoking years ago – we have started smoking again,” he said.
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