IRAN WATCH CANADA

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Amnesty International Reports on Execution (death row)




Countries that carried out executions in 2011 did so at an alarming rate but those employing capital punishment have decreased by more than a third compared to a decade ago, Amnesty International found in its annual review of death sentences and executions.


Only 10 percent of countries in the world, 20 out of 198, carried out executions last year.People were executed or sentenced to death for a range of offences including adultery and sodomy in Iran, blasphemy in Pakistan, sorcery in Saudi Arabia, the trafficking of human bones in the Republic of Congo, and drug offences in more than 10 countries. Methods of execution in 2011 included beheading, hanging, lethal injection and shooting. Some 18,750 people remained under sentence of death at the end of 2011 and at least 676 people were executed worldwide.But these figures do not include the thousands of executions that Amnesty International believes were carried out in China, where the numbers are suppressed.Nor do they account for the probable extent of Iran’s use of the death penalty – Amnesty International has had credible reports of substantial numbers of executions not officially acknowledged. "The vast majority of countries have moved away from using the death penalty," said Salil Shetty Secretary General of Amnesty International. "Our message to the leaders of the isolated minority of countries that continue to execute is clear: you are out of step with the rest of the world on this issue and it is time you took steps to end this most cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment."In the Middle East there has been a steep rise in recorded executions – up almost 50 per cent on the previous year. This was due to four countries – Iraq (at least 68 executions), Iran (at least 360), Saudi Arabia (at least 82) and Yemen (at least 41) – which accounted for 99 per cent of all recorded executions in the Middle East and North Africa. The rise in Iran and Saudi Arabia alone accounted for the net increase in recorded executions across the world of 149, compared to 2010.

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