Amnesty International released Global death penalty report 2013

Screenshot_3Amnesty International released the Global Death Penalty Report 2013 in London, with a call on governments who still killed in the name of justice to impose a moratorium on the death penalty with a view to abolishing it.

 Highlights of annual Amnesty International report 2013

  • At least 22 countries which are still applying death penalty, consider the abolition of capital punishment as a top priority. Also, the number of countries which use the death penalty has reduced in the last 20 years.
  • World’s Top executioner: China.
  • Overall 32 countries signed pardons on death sentences viz. Afghanistan, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), USA, etc.
  • Countries vindicated convicts: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, India, the UAE and USA.
  • Nine persistent executioners or ‘The 9 Worst Offenders’ (as they were known to execute every year since 2007 to 2013): China, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, USA, Yemen, Sudan, Bangladesh and North Korea.
  • Public executions were known to occur:Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Somalia.
  • No executions were reported in Singapore, while several death-row prisoners had their sentences commuted in that country in 2013.
  • Pacific sub-region continued to be a virtually death penalty-free zone, despite threats from Papua New Guinea to resume executions.
  • For the first time since 2009, Europe and Central Asia was an execution-free zone, with the only country still clinging to the death penalty being Belarus, although that country did not put anyone to death in 2013.

Indian figures of annual Amnesty International report 2013:

  • President Pranab Mukherjee rejected the mercy petitions of 18 prisoners on death row in 2013, the highest number of rejections by any President in the last 25 years.
  • The international standards were violated on the execution of Mohammad Afzal Guru in February 2013.
  • Raised concerns about the fairness of Afzal Guru’s trial viz. he did not receive legal representation of his choice or a lawyer with adequate experience at the trial stage, Afzal Guru’s family were not informed in time of his imminent execution and his body was not returned to the family for last rites and burial.
  • 72 new death sentences were known to have been imposed throughout the year and at least 400 people were believed to be on death row at the end of the year.

About Amnesty International

  • Type: Non-profit NGO.
  • Founded: July 1961 by Peter Benenson in the United Kingdom.
  • Headquarters: Global International Secretariat in London, United Kingdom.
  • Objective: To conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated.

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