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Trump's last days in office marred by disregard for human life. Death penalty just another example.

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Trump reinstated federal executions after nearly 20 years, with two slated for this week. When will the U.S. drop the practice and join other Western nations? If there's one thing that has defined the final days of the Trump administration, it's the lack of regard for human life. We saw that play out Wednesday after President Donald Trump incited rioters to bust through the U.S. Capitol and hunt down members of Congress.  Inciting a violent assault on the Capitol also displayed a disregard for democracy and the rule of law. This was the tragic finale of four years of failed federal leadership, and far from the only instance where the president’s disdain for human life has been demonstrated. His abject failure to provide the leadership necessary to deal effectively with the COVID-19 pandemic is beyond dispute, with the consequence being that the daily death count from COVID-19 has now surpassed that of 9/11. In the face of these unfolding tragedies, and at a time when the Trump

Hamas 'to publicly execute two men in Gaza'

Amnesty calls for Gaza's ruling party to halt 'inhuman and degrading' executions it says will be carried out next week.

Hamas is planning to publicly execute two prisoners in Gaza as a "lesson" to others next week, according to the human rights organisation Amnesty International, which has described the move as deeply disturbing.

A 23-year-old man has been sentenced to death for "collaboration with an enemy entity". He told his lawyer he had been beaten during interrogation, Amnesty reported.

An appeal at a military court is scheduled for Wednesday but he will be at risk of imminent execution if it is unsuccessful.

The second man, aged 27, confessed to the rape and murder of a six-year-old boy in 2000. He was sentenced to death despite being a minor at the time. According to Amnesty, he was "apparently tortured to 'confess'" to the crime.

The pair are among 40 prisoners on death row in Gaza. The most recent executions, of two men convicted of collaborating, took place in June at a police compound. One of them reportedly confessed after being tortured, according to Amnesty.

"Torture and other ill-treatment of detainees in the custody of Hamas security agencies are widespread and systematic," it added.

Philip Luther, the organisation's Middle East and north Africa director, called on Hamas to immediately halt imminent executions and commute all death sentences.

"This and other recent announcements by the Hamas authorities that they will carry out further executions are deeply disturbing," he said.

"The death penalty is cruel and inhuman and there is no evidence that it deters crime more effectively than other punishments. Public executions are degrading and compound the cruelty of the death penalty."

Hamas has carried out at least 16 executions since April 2010, according to Amnesty. Six suspected collaborators were shot dead in the street by masked gunmen shortly before the end of the war in Gaza last November.

Source: The Guardian, August 9, 2013

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