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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…

Sierra Leone to reintroduce death penalty as violent crimes spike

Sierra Leone to reintroduce death penalty
Sierra Leone's Minister of Internal Affairs has said the government would start implementing the death penalty to crack down on recent increase in gang-related killings in the country.

"We will kill when the state demands it," Palo Conteh said on Thursday. "I have called on the Director of Prisons to clean the gallows so that we will not be found wanting when the situation arises."

The gallows at the Male Correctional Center (Prisons) in Freetown have not been used since 1998 because President Koroma had put a moratorium on the death penalty, Conteh said.

"The death penalty is still in our law books and if any one is found guilty of murder we will not hesitate to enforce the law," he said.

Conteh pointed out that his ministry has instituted several methods to curb violence and the rampant killings in the country, in particular Freetown.

Meanwhile, the Sierra Leone police have started the "stop and search" raids in communities that are presumed to engage in violence activities. 

The ministry of internal affairs has also set up special units comprising Operational Support Division Officers together with detectives to go after thugs and cliques.

The minister also asked for the cooperation of the public with the police by informing them of any unusual activity in their community.

Source: Global Times, September 17, 2016

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