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Why Texas’ ‘death penalty capital of the world’ stopped executing people

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Since the Supreme Court legalized capital punishment in 1976, Harris County, Texas, has executed 126 people. That's more executions than every individual state in the union, barring Texas itself.
Harris County's executions account for 23 percent of the 545 people Texas has executed. On the national level, the state alone is responsible for more than a third of the 1,465 people put to death in the United States since 1976.
In 2017, however, the county known as the "death penalty capital of the world" and the "buckle of the American death belt" executed and sentenced to death a remarkable number of people: zero.
This is the first time since 1985 that Harris County did not execute any of its death row inmates, and the third year in a row it did not sentence anyone to capital punishment either.
The remarkable statistic reflects a shift the nation is seeing as a whole.
“The practices that the Harris County District Attorney’s Office is following are also signifi…

Iraqi PM orders immediate execution of convicted terrorists

Iraq bombings
The Prime Minister of Iraq Haider Jawad Kadhim Al-Abadi ordered on Monday to execute immediately all terrorists on death row in the country. 

The instructions were submitted to the Ministry of Justice after deadly attacks in Baghdad on Sunday, which killed 165 and wounded 225.

A lorry packed with explosives was detonated in a busy shopping district of the capital of Iraq where locals were shopping for the holiday marking the end of Ramadan. 

The second bomb exploded at an outdoor market in the Shaab, neighbourhood of southeastern Baghdad. So-called Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attacks, which believed to be the deadliest in Iraq since 2007. 

Prime Minister al-Abadi condemned the bombing and declared three days of mourning across the country after visiting the scene of the attack.

Despite territorial gains by Iraq’s ground forces against ISIS and loosing by the latter one of 45 percent of the territory it once held in Iraq, the terrorist group is still able to launch attacks.

Agence France-Presse reports that 5 death-row inmates were executed on Monday, quoting a Ministry of Justice spokesman.

Sources: New Europe, Agence France-Presse, July 5, 2016


Iraq executes 5 after devastating Baghdad blast: ministry

Iraq executed 5 convicts on Monday, the justice ministry said, linking the timing of the executions to the Baghdad suicide bombing the previous day that killed more than 200 people.

The ministry said it wanted families bereaved in the bombing to know "that their brothers in the justice ministry are continuing to deliver just punishment to those whose hands are stained with the blood of Iraqis".

"Therefore, we would like to announce the implementation of death sentences against 5 convicts this morning," it said in a statement, without specifying their crimes.

The ministry also offered its condolences to families of victims of Sunday's carnage in Baghdad.

A suicide bombing claimed by the ISIS terrorist group ripped through a crowded shopping area, killing more than 200 people in one of the deadliest ever attacks by terrorists in Iraq.

Jordan responded in a similar way last year, executing 2 extremist prisoners after ISIS had burned alive one of its pilots whose plane was downed over Syria.

The move drew fire from rights group Amnesty International, which said executions should not be used "as a tool for revenge".

ISIS overran large areas north and west of Baghdad in 2014, but has since lost signficant ground to Iraqi forces.

Experts have warned that the terrorist group may step up bombings targeting civilians as it suffers setbacks on the battlefield.

Source: Decan Chronicle, July 5, 2016

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