FEATURED POST

Texas: With a man's execution days away, his victims react with fury or forgiveness

Image
For the past 3 months, Christopher Anthony Young has awoken in his 10-by-6 foot concrete cell on death row and had to remind himself: He's scheduled to die soon.
As the day crept closer, the thought became more constant for Young, who's sentenced to die for killing Hasmukh "Hash" Patel in 2004.
"What will it feel like to lay on the gurney?" he asks himself. "To feel the needle pierce my vein?"
Mitesh Patel, who was 22 when Young murdered his father, has anxiously anticipated those moments, as well. He wonders how he will feel when he files into the room adjacent to the death chamber and sees Young just feet away through a glass wall.
For years, Patel felt a deep hatred for Young. He wanted to see him die. Patel knew it wouldn't bring his father back. But it was part of the process that started 14 years ago when Young, then 21, gunned down Hash Patel during a robbery at Patel's convenience store on the Southeast Side of San Antonio.
3 mont…

Philippines: EU joins call for halt to killings in drug war

The government must "put an end to the current wave of extrajudicial executions
and  killings" of drug suspects, the European Union urges.
The European Union has joined the global call on the Philippine government to "put an end to the current wave of extrajudicial executions and killings" of drug suspects.

Alarmed at the rising death toll in President Duterte's brutal crackdown on drug syndicates, the EU Parliament directed its delegation in the Philippines and the embassies of 28 European countries in Manila to monitor rights abuses following his declaration on Sept. 3 of a "state of national emergency on account of lawlessness."

Mr. Duterte placed the entire country under a state of national emergency after a bomb exploded at a night market in his hometown, Davao City, on Sept 2, killing 15 people and injuring 69 others.

In an extraordinary intervention, the EU lawmakers passed a 5-page resolution expressing concern over the appalling number of drug suspects killed by police and vigilantes since Mr. Duterte launched a crackdown on illegal drugs upon taking office on June 30. More than 3,000 people have been killed in just over 2 months. Mr. Duterte has pledged to eradicate the drugs scourge in 3 to 6 months of his presidency.

The EU members represent the largest bloc of Western democracies, including Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg, Czech Republic, Sweden, Portugal and Finland.

The EU intervention aligned with a number of states (including the United States), the United Nations and international human rights watchdog organizations that have called on the Philippines to end the extrajudicial killings.

This growing concerted global demand to end the extrajudicial executions has put the Philippine government at risk of inviting international sanctions, including either diplomatic or economic, and isolation if it continued to defy or ignore the calls.

Without directly blaming the government, the EU lawmakers said they believed Mr. Duterte's incendiary public statements had encouraged mass murders involving drug traffickers and users.

"President Duterte repeatedly urged law enforcement agencies and the public to kill suspected drug traffickers who did not surrender as well as drug users," the EU resolution said.

"President Duterte publicly stated he would not pursue law enforcement officers and citizens who killed drug dealers and who resisted arrest," it added.

No to death penalty


According to wire services reports, the EU Parliament adopted the resolution dealing with extrajudicial killings in the Philippines based on the Partnership Cooperation Agreement signed by the European Union and the Philippines in 2014, to advance engagement on political, trade, security, environment and human rights issues.

The agreement commits the Philippines to uphold the rule of law, social democracy, as well as international human rights conventions.

The EU Parliament also emphasized that ending the extrajudicial killings of drug suspects was vital to the Philippines' holding the chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) in 2017.

The lawmakers pointed out that "President Duterte has announced that during the Philippines' chairmanship, we (the government) will highlight Asean as a model of regionalism and global player, with the interest of the people at its core."

They also called on the Philippine Congress "to abstain from reintroducing the death penalty (which Mr. Duterte has endorsed) and from lowering the minimum age of criminal liability."

The EU Parliament said that based on "all empirical evidence, the death penalty does not reduce the drug delinquency and would destroy a great achievement of the Philippine justice system."

It directed its delegation in the Philippines to provide wide assistance to the Philippine government to implement measures in line with its commitment to international human rights obligations.

Lack of understanding


On another front, Mr. Duterte came under fire from the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights for speaking against and opposing human rights institutions and investigations.

Speaking at the 33rd session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva on Tuesday, High Commissioner Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein said, "The President of the Philippines" statements of scorn for international human rights display a striking lack of understanding of our human rights institutions and principles which keep societies safe."

Al Hussein pointed out that "fair and impartial rule of law is the foundation of public confidence and security" and "empowering police forces to shoot to kill any individual whom they claim to suspect of drug crimes, with or without evidence, undermines justice."

He emphasized, "The people of the Philippines have a right to judicial institutions that are impartial, and operate under due process guarantees; and they have a right to a police that serves justice. I strongly recommend the Philippines to extend an invitation to the special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions."

Al Hussein said that governments had accused human rights institutions of interfering in the affairs of sovereign nations.

"Are human rights exclusively a national issue? Governments have the responsibility to uphold their human rights obligations and to respect the standards. But the human rights of all people, in all countries, also require - unquestionably - our collective attention," he said.

"Human rights are universal, indivisible and interdependent. If states pick and choose which rights they will uphold, the entire structure is undermined," he said.

Source: opinion.inquirer.net, September 19, 2016

⚑ | Report an error, an omission; suggest a story or a new angle to an existing story; send a submission; recommend a resource; contact the webmaster, contact us: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com.


Opposed to Capital Punishment? Help us keep this blog up and running! DONATE!

Most Viewed (Last 7 Days)

Texas: With a man's execution days away, his victims react with fury or forgiveness

Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles rejects clemency for Chris Young

20 Minutes to Death: Record of the Last Execution in France

Scott Dozier case: Hours before execution, judge in pharma company suit halts use of drug

Alabama: 8 death row inmates request execution by nitrogen gas

Indonesia: Gay couple publicly whipped after vigilante mob drags them out of beauty salon

Fentanyl And The Death Penalty

Utah to seek death penalty for parents charged with killing daughter, covering her in makeup

The Aum Shinrikyo Executions: Why Now?

Sale of guillotine divides France