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

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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…

Iran: Juvenile Offender Forgiven for Murder, Saved from Execution by Victim's Family

Rauf Hasani
Rauf Hasani
Rauf Hasani was 16 years old at the time of his arrest.

Iran Human Rights (SEPT 24 2016): Rauf Hasani, a juvenile prisoner on death row in Saqqez Central Prison on murder charges, has been saved from execution after the complainants on his case file forgave him.

A source close to Rauf tells Iran Human Rights: "The Hasani family and the family of the murder victim were present in court on September 14, 2016. At the hearing the murder victim's family agreed to forgive Rauf on the condition that he moves out of Saqqez and that he can only return in the event of a funeral for one of his immediate family members. The Hasani family agreed to the condition and the presiding judge confirmed it."

According to confirmed sources, Rauf Hasani, who was born in January 1997, was arrested by Iranian authorities in August 2013 in the city of Saqqez (Kurdistan province, northwestern Iran) on murder charges. 

Rauf, 16 years old at the time of his arrest, was sentenced to death in spring 2015 by the civil court in Saqqez.

Rauf, who has only completed school up to the fifth grade, is currently still held in the juvenile offenders ward of Saqqez Central Prison where he is awaiting a retrial.

Rauf Hasani is among seven death row juvenile offenders identified in a recent report published by Iran Human Rights.

Source: Iran Human Rights, September 24, 2016

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