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America's Secret Death Penalty Drugs

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Governments have gone to great effort to keep the sources and methods of their death penalty regimes secret.
In November, the Omaha World-Herald sent a simple records request to the Nebraska state government. Along with several other news outlets, the paper wanted to know the source of the drugs to be used in an upcoming execution—the first in the state in more than 20 years.
In the past the Nebraska Department of Corrections would have provided this information, but now it refused. Officials there insisted that the supplier of the drugs the state intended to use, in the name of its citizens, to sedate, paralyze, and stop the beating heart of an inmate were exempt from Nebraska's public record law.
In December the Nebraska chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) sued to challenge the denial.
Nebraska is just the latest state to decide the executioner's black hood of anonymity also covers the pharmacies that mix the deadly compounds used to kill prisoners. As letha…

Saudi Arabia executes Egyptian man for drug smuggling

Public execution in Saudi Arabia (file photo)
Public execution in Saudi Arabia (file photo)
RIYADH - Saudi Arabia executed on Monday an Egyptian man convicted of smuggling drugs, the interior ministry said, bringing to 59 the number of convicts put to death this year.

Ibrahim Mohammed Salman was caught trying to smuggle opium which was hidden in his car, the ministry said in a statement carried by state news agency SPA.

He was executed in the northern city of Tabuk, the ministry said.

Most executions in ultra-conservative Saudi Arabia are done by beheading with a sword.

The kingdom on January 2 executed 47 people in a single day for "terrorism".

In 2015 the kingdom executed 153 people, mostly for drug trafficking or murder, according to an AFP tally.

Amnesty International says the number of executions in Saudi Arabia last year was the highest for two decades.

However, the tally was far behind that for China and Iran.

The kingdom practises a strict Islamic legal code under which murder, drug trafficking, armed robbery, rape, homosexuality and apostasy are all punishable by death.

Source: Agence France-Presse, February 8, 2016

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