FEATURED POST

America Is Stuck With the Death Penalty for (At Least) a Generation

Image
With Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement, the national fight to abolish capital punishment will have to go local.
When the Supreme Court revived capital punishment in 1976, just four years after de facto abolishing it, the justices effectively took ownership of the American death penalty and all its outcomes. They have spent the decades since then setting its legal and constitutional parameters, supervising its general implementation, sanctioning its use in specific cases, and brushing aside concerns about its many flaws.
That unusual role in the American legal system is about to change. With Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement from the court this summer, the Supreme Court will lose a heterodox jurist whose willingness to cross ideological divides made him the deciding factor in many legal battles. In cases involving the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment, his judgment often meant the difference between life and death for hundreds of death-row pr…

North Korea General Thought to Be Executed in February Resurfaces

Kim Jong-un (R) with Ri Yong-gil at a military parade in October 2015
Kim Jong-un (R) with Ri Yong-gil at a military parade in October 2015
May 10, 2016: the North Korean state news media published list of officials newly selected for senior posts, which also includes Ri Yong-gil, a prominent general thought to be executed in February on corruption charges. 

According to the North Korean reports, he is not only alive but a member of the Central Committee of the ruling Workers’ Party, as well as its Central Military Commission.

The appointments were made during the Workers’ Party congress that ended on 9 May, the first such gathering in 36 years. General Ri was also named an alternate member of the Politburo, according to the reports.

General Ri had been chief of the North Korean Army’s general staff, the third-ranking figure in the army’s hierarchy, when his name abruptly stopped appearing in state media reports in January. In February, South Korean intelligence officials said General Ri had been executed, apparently the latest senior official to fall in a series of purges and executions that the North’s top leader, Kim Jong-un, has used to consolidate power.

Doubts about General Ri’s supposed execution emerged in March, when a South Korean cable channel, MBN, reported that General Ri had been demoted, not executed, and that he had been allowed to return to service.

Pictures released on 10 May by the North Korean state news media seemed to support that theory. General Ri was shown wearing a three-star rather than a four-star insignia, indicating he had been reduced in rank. 

Source: The New York Times, May 10, 2016

- Report an error, an omission: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com - Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

Most Viewed (Last 7 Days)

Texas: With a man's execution days away, his victims react with fury or forgiveness

Texas executes Christopher Young

Ohio executes Robert Van Hook

Saudi Arabia executes seven people in one day

20 Minutes to Death: Record of the Last Execution in France

Ex-Aum member Yoshihiro Inoue’s last words: ‘I didn’t expect things to turn out this way’

Execution date pushed back for Texas 7 escapee after paperwork error on death warrant

Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles rejects clemency for Chris Young

Ohio Governor commutes one sentence, delays another

Oklahoma: Death row inmate’s legal team hopes DNA testing on key piece of evidence will exonerate him before execution