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In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

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To cope with his dread, John Kitzhaber opened his leather-bound journal and began to write.
It was a little past 9 on the morning of Nov. 22, 2011. Gary Haugen had dropped his appeals. A Marion County judge had signed the murderer's death warrant, leaving Kitzhaber, a former emergency room doctor, to decide Haugen's fate. The 49-year-old would soon die by lethal injection if the governor didn't intervene.
Kitzhaber was exhausted, having been unable to sleep the night before, but he needed to call the families of Haugen's victims.
"I know my decision will delay the closure they need and deserve," he wrote.
The son of University of Oregon English professors, Kitzhaber began writing each day in his journal in the early 1970s. The practice helped him organize his thoughts and, on that particular morning, gather his courage.
Kitzhaber first dialed the widow of David Polin, an inmate Haugen beat and stabbed to death in 2003 while already serving a life sentence fo…

Iran: 12 Prisoners Hanged on Drug Charges

Iran Human Rights (AUG 27 2016): Iran Human Rights (IHR) warned yesterday about the imminent execution of more than 10 prisoners in Karaj Central Prison. 

According to close sources, 12 prisoners were executed at this prison early morning on Saturday August 27.

Close sources have identified nine of the prisoners who were executed this morning:

Alireza Madadpour, Bahman Rezaei, Arman Bahrami, Alireza Asadi (pictured below), Mohsen Eslami, Hossein Bahrami, Mehdi Rostami, Amir Sarkhah and Alireza Sarkhah". All the prisoners were reportedly sentenced to death for drug related offences.

The death sentences were carried out despite an urgent call by Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Iran, to halt the executions.

During the past two years several high ranking Iranian officials have admitted that executions have not deterred drug crimes in Iran. But still, Iranian authorities continue the execution of hundreds every year for such charges.

Alireza Asadi was one of the prisoners who was executed in Karaj Central Prison early Saturday morning August 27.

Source: Iran Human Rights, August 27, 2016

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