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Editorial: In a civilized society, not even the most vicious crimes justify a death sentence

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It is soul-bruising to contemplate the torture that 10-year-old Anthony Avalos endured in his Lancaster home for more than a week before dying last year. Whippings with a looped cord and belt. Repeatedly held upside down then dropped on his head. Getting slammed into pieces of furniture and against the floor. Hot sauce poured on his face and mouth.
The road map of the abuse stretched from head to toe on his small malnourished body — bruises, abrasions, scabs and cuts visible on the outside. Traumatic brain injury and soft tissue damage on the inside. All allegedly perpetrated by his mother, Heather Barron, and her boyfriend, Kareem Leiva.
RELATED | California: Prosecutors seeking death penalty in Anthony Avalos torture case
If ever a set of circumstances called for the death penalty, this would be it. Few were surprised when Los Angeles County prosecutors said Wednesday that if the couple is convicted of the torture-murder, the jury will be asked to recommend a death sentence.
Such ca…

Iran: 107 executed in 5 weeks

In a barbaric act on Wednesday, February 5, the anti-human clerical regime secretly and collectively hanged 15 Baluchi political prisoners in the prison of Chahbahar. Khossrow Barahoui, a local from Loutak in Zabol, 2 brothers from Rigi tribe, 2 brothers from Mir tribe, and a merchant by the name of Afzal Rigi are among those who have been hanged.

According to the reports published, also on the previous day, 7 prisoners were secretly buried in nameless graves in a desolate place at the Zahedan cemetery.

At the dawn of February 6, 2 prisoners by the names of Parviz Ashna from Bandar Abbas and Farhad Soltani from Kermanshah were executed in the central prison of Bandar Abbas. The execution of a 29 year old in Zahedan prison on February 1 was yet another execution that was registered last week.

Therefore, the number of executions in the first 5 weeks of this year reaches 107.

Spread of a wave of executions in many cities particularly in deprived regions demonstrates the fear of the detested clerical regime of the uprising of the peoples of these regions that are under intolerable pressures.

The Iranian Resistance calls on the UN Security Council, the United States, the European Union, and the human rights defenders the world throughout to resort to urgent action regarding the arbitrary and collective executions of this year that have taken on an unprecedented scale. Continuation and expansion of economic and diplomatic relations with this regime and ignoring these anti-human crimes, with whatever pretext, only encourages the continuation and intensification of group executions and thus must be stopped.

Source: Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, Feb. 10, 2014

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