Iran: Annual report on the death penalty 2017

IRAN HUMAN RIGHTS (MARCH 13, 2018): The 10th annual report on the death penalty in Iran by Iran Human Rights (IHR) and ECPM shows that in 2017 at least 517 people were executed in the Islamic Republic of Iran. 
This number is comparable with the execution figures in 2016 and confirms the relative reduction in the use of the death penalty compared to the period between 2010 and 2015. 
Nevertheless, with an average of more than one execution every day and more than one execution per one million inhabitants in 2017, Iran remained the country with the highest number of executions per capita.
2017 Annual Report at a Glance:
At least 517 people were executed in 2017, an average of more than one execution per day111 executions (21%) were announced by official sources.Approximately 79% of all executions included in the 2017 report, i.e. 406 executions, were not announced by the authorities.At least 240 people (46% of all executions) were executed for murder charges - 98 more than in 2016.At le…

Ex-governor Michael Dukakis endorses campaign to exonerate Ethel Rosenberg, executed in 1953

Robert and Michael visited the White House in 1953 in a failed bid to get President Eisenhower to stop their parents’ executions.
Robert and Michael visited the White House in 1953 in a failed
bid to get President Eisenhower to stop their parents’ executions.
More than 60 years after the execution of alleged spy Ethel Rosenberg, a former governor of Massachusetts has endorsed a campaign to exonerate her.

Rosenberg and her husband, Julius, of New York, were put to death by electric chair in 1953 for conspiring to pass secrets about the atomic bomb to the Soviets. Other alleged co-conspirators served prison sentences after cooperating with prosecutors.

The Rosenbergs' convictions and executions remain controversial, with supporters saying the evidence was weak and the Rosenbergs were victims of Cold War hysteria.

The couple's sons, Robert and Michael Meeropol, were 6 and 10 years old at the time. Now 69 and 73, they are asking the U.S. Department of Justice and President Obama to definitively state that their mother was innocent.

"An enormous body of evidence ... demonstrates that Ethel Rosenberg was not a spy, and that the government knew this at the time of her trial and execution," said Dukakis in offering his support. "The charges against Ethel and the threat of the death penalty were meant to intimidate her and use her, in the government's own words, as 'a lever' to force her husband to cooperate with the prosecution."

The cause has also earned endorsements from U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Worcester, filmmaker Michael Moore and 13 members of the New York City Council, along with 45,000 signatures on an online petition by the Rosenberg Fund for Children.

This effort is modeled on a proclamation Dukakis issued as governor in 1977, declaring that Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti, two Italian immigrants and alleged anarchists executed for murder in 1927, were not guilty.

"Today, I urge President Obama to take similar action," said Dukakis, adding that a presidential proclamation would be in the service of "justice."

In an interview last month, Robert Meeropol said he does not want his mother pardoned "because she was not guilty. We're asking for a proclamation that she was wrongly convicted, and wrongly executed."

The brothers acknowledged in 2008 that their father was part of a conspiracy, but they insist he did not pass along nuclear secrets. Their change of heart about Julius Rosenberg came after co-defendant Morty Sobell confessed.

Source: masslive.com, December 13, 2016

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