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Oklahoma | I went inside death row, what I saw made me sick - Henry McLeish

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The evolution of civilised behaviour, indicating a retreat from barbarism, has become a distinctive feature of most modern western democracies, but America often disappoints, retaining practices that shock, sadden, and in my case, nearly made me physically sick.
My visit to death row at McAlester State Penitentiary, Oklahoma, brought home to me, how the final setting for government sponsored killings, combined with execution by lethal injection, brought a brutal end to lives. And made a mockery of the idea of justice, offering instead a violent, humiliating, and inhuman act of revenge, with no serious pretence that any of these end of life dramas, provide any deterrence in criminal justice terms. Formerly known as “Indian Territory”, and home of the Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma, with a population of over 4 million, became a state in 1907. Located in America’s “Bible” belt, where there is a strong fundamentalist Christian tradition and powerful Republican politics, Oklahoma remains a pro…

UAE: Widow pardons husband's killer in Abu Dhabi

A Pakistani widow surprised the judge at an Abu Dhabi court when she told him she was forgiving the killer of her husband in line with Islamic teachings.

The judge had given the woman three options — either to pardon the defendant, demand diya (blood money) or have the killer executed.

“This Pakistani woman has set an example in forgiveness,” the semi-official Arabic language daily ‘Al Ittihad’ said.

“She and her sons decided to pardon the killer of her husband. 

She affirmed to court that she only did this in line with Islamic teachings which call for toleration and forgiveness and that she only wanted to satisfy God the Almighty.”

Under Islamic law, a convicted killer can be freed after spending a specific jail term if pardoned by the victim’s relatives in return for diya.

Source: Emirates 24/7, December 24, 2014

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