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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Turkey's President Erdogan refuses to rule out death penalty

Military coup in Turkey
Turkey's President has refused to rule out the death penalty for the thousands of people arrested following a violent failed military coup Friday.

"There is a clear crime of treason and your request can never be rejected by our government," said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaking through his translator in a world exclusive interview with CNN's Becky Anderson at his presidential palace in Istanbul, Turkey.

"But of course it will take a parliamentary decision for that to take action in the form of a constitutional measure so leaders will have to get together and discuss it and if they accept to discuss it then I as president will approve any decision that comes out of the parliament."

This is the 1st interview given by the president since the attempted military coup on Friday, July 15.

If Turkey does reintroduce the death penalty, it won't be joining the European Union, according to EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini earlier Monday.

Commenting on people's calls for the death penalty for coup plotters, Erdogan said: "'Why should I keep them and feed them in prisons, for years to come?' -- that's what the people say."

"They want a swift end to it, because people lost relatives, lost neighbors, lost children... they're suffering so the people are very sensitive and we have to act very sensibly and sensitively," he added.

The comments come in the wake of Friday's failed military coup and the president's vow over the weekend that those responsible "will pay a heavy price for this act of treason."

A total of 8,777 officers from the Turkish Ministry of Interior have so far been removed from office, according to the state-run Anadolu news agency.

Among the arrested are 103 generals and admirals -- 1/3 of the general-rank command of the Turkish military.

A formal written request for the extradition of Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is in self-imposed exile in the United States, will be submitted within days, Erdogan told Anderson.

When asked what he would do if the U.S. refused to extradite Gulen, he said "we have a mutual agreement of extradition of criminals."

"So now you ask someone to be extradited, you're my strategic partner I do obey, I do abide by that, but you don't do the same thing -- well, of course, there should be reciprocity in the types of things," the president continued.

Erdogan has previously blamed Gulen for the attempted coup -- a claim which Gulen has denied.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the U.S. hadn't yet received a formal request from Turkey for Gulen's extradition.

Source: CNN, July 18, 2016


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