“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Posts Tagged ‘Death Penalty

Return Of The Death Penalty.

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What people do when they have power tells you a lot about them.

Do they tried to do good? Do they prioritise social spending? Take an interest in education? Or does the cult of the gun rule?

I think the answer is fairly clear when it comes to the rulers of Gaza, Hamas.

Their preferences and attitudes have been shown in the last couple of years, no more so than their reintroduction of the death penalty.

Apparently, according to the BBC, Hamas are exercising their monopoly on state inflicted murder:

“He did not say how the men were executed but, according to the AFP news agency, Samir Zakut of the Palestinian human rights group Al-Misan said they executed by firing squad before dawn.

An employee at Shifa hospital was quoted by the Associated Press as saying that the bodies of the two men, dropped off by armed men in the early hours, were riddled with bullets. “

The UN were bold enough to criticise Hamas’s actions, but I doubt Hamas will give a fig one way or the other:

“”It is extremely disappointing that Hamas has now returned to the use of the death penalty,” Ms Pillay in a statement.

“I call on Hamas to reconsider its position and exhibit respect for the international community’s firm rejection of the death penalty, to abolish its use in Gaza, and to fully uphold and promote the right to life,” she urged.

Ms Pillay added that the death penalty can be imposed only after fair trials in duly constituted courts, she said, was “practically impossible in current circumstances in Gaza”. “

Written by modernityblog

17/04/2010 at 22:09

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Executing A Stone Thrower.

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The Torygraph reports:

“Mohammad-Amin Valian, a 20-year-old Islamic studies student, was arrested on the basis of a photograph taken at a mass demonstration against the rigged presidential election last year. He was among six people convicted of the Islamic crime of moharebeh, or waging war against God.”

Written by modernityblog

19/03/2010 at 00:56

Hunting Witches.

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Just heard about this on the radio and I thought that hunting Witches had stopped in the 16th century, but apparently Ali Sibat has been sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia for sorcery, the Guardian explains:

“Once again, the spotlight is on Saudi Arabia for all the wrong reasons. This time, the kingdom is attracting criticism for condemning a self-styled psychic to death on the vague charge of “witchcraft”.

Ali Sibat, who is Lebanese, was arrested by Saudi Arabia’s notorious moral police at his hotel room in Medina on May 7 last year, while in town for a pilgrimage. After languishing in jail for a year and a half, he was sentenced to death in November for reportedly practising witchcraft. His lawyer has said Sibat was told that if he confessed to witchcraft, he would be released and allowed to return home.

Sibat was known for his appearances on a Lebanese satellite television station, where he offered callers advice and predictions about the future. Human rights organisations and media reports allege that these TV appearances were the only evidence used to condemn Sibat to death. This is a point worth emphasising: Sibat didn’t kill, torture, terrorise or kidnap anyone, or commit any crime that put anybody else’s life at risk. He told the superstitious whether they would find happiness or have children, and as a result, he has been condemned to death.”

Amnesty International’s take on it.

Written by modernityblog

19/12/2009 at 04:44

Gays Facing The Death Penalty In Iran

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A terrible piece of news out of Iran:

Ten young Iranian men, including eight teenagers, are currently awaiting execution for sodomy, and two more are being re-tried on the same capital charge. And, in an exclusive interview with Gay City News, an Iranian student gay rights activist confirmed for the first time the existence of queer organizing on multiple university campuses throughout Iran.

The information about the ten youths currently under sentence of death for sodomy (lavaat in Persian) was released on November 25 in a joint appeal by the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), the Iranian Queer Organization (IRQO), and COC of the Netherlands, the world’s oldest LGBT rights group, founded in 1946. The three organizations called on Western countries “with significant diplomatic and economic ties to Iran, including Germany, France, Canada, as well as the European Union, to pursue diplomatic efforts to cease these executions.”

It is extremely difficult to obtain information about death penalty cases involving homosexuality under today’s repressive theocratic regime in the Islamic Republic of Iran, where the press is heavily censored and journalists, regime critics, and human rights advocates are routinely persecuted and arrested and where the subject of same-sex relations is officially considered a political and religious taboo. Defendants in sodomy cases are denied open trials. Last month, Human Rigths Watch, basing its finding on an Iranian newspaper report, told of the execution of two men for sodomy.

Most of the new information about the 12 defendants now threatened with execution for sodomy was provided by lawyers and activists with the Committee of Human Rights Reporters (CHHR) in Iran, according to Hossein Alizadeh, the Middle East and North Africa program coordinator for IGLHRC, while contacts in Iran provided by IRQO yielded additional information, he told Gay City News.”

(H/T: Adam Holland)

Written by modernityblog

14/12/2009 at 18:15