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States to try new ways of executing prisoners. Their latest idea? Opioids.

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The synthetic painkiller fentanyl has been the driving force behind the nation’s opioid epidemic, killing tens of thousands of Americans last year in overdoses. Now two states want to use the drug’s powerful properties for a new purpose: to execute prisoners on death row.
As Nevada and Nebraska push for the country’s first fentanyl-assisted executions, doctors and death penalty opponents are fighting those plans. They have warned that such an untested use of fentanyl could lead to painful, botched executions, comparing the use of it and other new drugs proposed for lethal injection to human experimentation.
States are increasingly pressed for ways to carry out the death penalty because of problems obtaining the drugs they long have used, primarily because pharmaceutical companies are refusing to supply their drugs for executions.
The situation has led states such as Florida, Ohio and Oklahoma to turn to novel drug combinations for executions. Mississippi legalized nitrogen gas this s…

Sri Lanka Death Row Inmates Get Sentences Commuted To Life

Following a set of recommendations made by a committee appointed to look into the death sentence issued on several convicts, it has been decided to convert the death sentence imposed on 34 of those convicts into life imprisonment.

President Maithripala Sirisena had taken the decision after considering the reports on the 34 convicts submitted by the committee which was appointed by the former President.

The committee has also finalized reports on another 60 convicts on death row and these reports will also be handed over to the President for his consideration, a committee member told The Sunday Leader.

Since the death sentence is not implemented in Sri Lanka an issue has arisen on the convicts who are on death row.

Human rights groups have urged the Sri Lankan government not to implement the death sentence despite pressure from some groups and individuals following a spate of gruesome murders in the country.

Source: The Sunday Leader, Feb. 8, 2016

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