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Texas Should Not Have Executed Robert Pruett

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Update: Robert Pruett was executed by lethal injection on Thursday.
Robert Pruett is scheduled to be executed by the State of Texas Thursday. He has never had a chance to live outside a prison as an adult. Taking his life is a senseless wrong that shows how badly the justice system fails juveniles.
Mr. Pruett was 15 years old when he last saw the outside world, after being arrested as an accomplice to a murder committed by his own father. Now 38, having been convicted of a murder while incarcerated, he will be put to death. At a time when the Supreme Court has begun to recognize excessive punishments for juveniles as unjust, Mr. Pruett’s case shows how young lives can be destroyed by a justice system that refuses to give second chances.
Mr. Pruett’s father, Sam Pruett, spent much of Mr. Pruett’s early childhood in prison. Mr. Pruett and his three siblings were raised in various trailer parks by his mother, who he has said used drugs heavily and often struggled to feed the children. Wh…

UAE imposes harsh penalties for religious crimes

The United Arab Emirates on Monday announced new legislation imposing harsh sentences including the death penalty for crimes related to religious hatred and Sunni extremism.

A presidential decree criminalises any act that stirs religious hatred and also prohibits discrimination "on the basis of religion, caste, creed, doctrine, race, colour or ethnic origin".

Offenders risk up to 10 years in prison or the death penalty if convicted of "takfirism" or Sunni Muslim extremism, according to the text of the decree distributed by the official WAM news agency.

Proponents of such ideology adopted by Al-Qaeda and other radical Islamist groups describe as infidels non-Muslims as well as Muslims who do not share their beliefs.

The oil-rich Gulf state last year brought in strict new legislation and listed 83 groups classified as "terrorist", including the Muslim Brotherhood.

Source: Agence France-Presse, July 21, 2015

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