Texas: Gov. Abbott should grant death row inmate Rodney Reed a reprieve, before it’s too late

Convicted murderer Rodney Reed is scheduled to die by lethal injection on Nov. 20, but Gov. Greg Abbott has the power to stop it.
As it stands, there’s no indication that Abbott will. He has only stopped one execution since becoming governor 5 years ago.
Reed was sentenced to death in 1998, after being convicted of the brutal 1996 rape and killing of a 19-year-old woman from central Texas, Stacey Stites. And though the governor has yet to weigh in on this specific case, he supports capital punishment, as do most voters in the state. According to a June 2018 poll from the University of Texas/Texas Tribune, fully three-fourths of Texans strongly or somewhat support the death penalty.
But the question at hand has nothing to do with the death penalty, per se. Granting a reprieve would simply be the right thing to do — and a necessary precaution against the doubts that would linger, if Reed is executed as scheduled.
Reed has consistently maintained his innocence, and legitimate questions …

Bangladesh PM rejects demands for tougher blasphemy laws

April 9, 2013: Bangladesh's prime minister rejected demands for tougher blasphemy laws in the face of growing pressure from protesters wanting the death sentence for blaspheming bloggers.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said in an exclusive interview with the BBC that sufficient laws are in place to punish people who insult any religion, not just those who defame Islam and Prophet Muhammad.

"This country is a secular democracy. So each and every religion has the right to practice their religion freely and fair," she told the BBC.

"But it isn't fair to hurt anybody's religious feeling. Always we try to protect every religious sentiment."

Her comments come as members of the religious group Hefajat-e Islam continue to march through the capital urging a nationwide shutdown of businesses and demanding tougher blasphemy laws including use of the death penalty.

Among their demands is strict punishment of so-called atheist bloggers whom they blaspheme Islam and Prophet Muhammad, a report by the Daily News said.

"A new law will have to be formulated incorporating the provision of the punishment suggested in Islam," Noor Hossain Kashemi, leader of the Dhaka city branch of Hefajat, said.

Source: UPI, April 9, 2013

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