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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…

Philippines death penalty: ‘The cheaper, the better’

Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez
Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez
SPEAKER Pantaleon Alvarez said the debate on the method of executing death convicts should focus more on cost―the cheaper, the better.

In an interview with reporters, Alvarez said lawmakers should not make a big deal of how a death convict should be killed, whether through hanging or firing squad or lethal injection.

“[Lawmakers] should not argue if death by hanging, firing squad or lethal injection was better, all of them will end up dead anyway,” said Alvarez.

Alvarez’s preference was for a low-cost method to save on government resources.

“Whatever is cheaper. As Sen. [Manny] Pacquiao (who preferred the hanging method) said, you just kick the chair,” said Alvarez.

He proposed that the Executive branch be allowed to make the decision on the mode of execution. President Duterte has announced in his campaign he wanted the shock value of a double hanging.

Alvarez has filed a resolution reimposing the death penalty on heinous crimes which was abolished in 2006, adding he was determined to have it approved by Congress to deter the worsening crime rate in the country.

Source: inquirer.net, August 10, 2016 (local time)

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