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Tennessee execution: Billy Ray Irick tortured to death, expert says in new filing

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Editor's note: Reporter Dave Boucher was one of seven state-required media witnesses at Irick's execution. 
Billy Ray Irick felt searing pain akin to torture before he died in a Tennessee prison in August, but steps taken in carrying out his execution blocked signs of suffering, according to a doctor who reviewed information about the lethal injection.
In new court filings entered late Thursday amidst an ongoing legal challenge of Tennessee’s lethal injection protocol, Dr. David Lubarsky said statements from people who witnessed the execution indicated the controversial drug midazolam failed to ensure Irick could not feel pain during his death.
As a result, the death row inmate “experienced the feeling of choking, drowning in his own fluids, suffocating, being buried alive, and the burning sensation caused by the injection of the potassium chloride,” Lubarsky wrote in the filing.
The document also says the state did not follow its own lethal injection protocol, raising questio…

Iran: Head of Judiciary Orders Quick Sunni Prisoners' Execution

Iranian regime's head of judiciary has ordered that Sunni prisoners convicted of drug trafficking to be executed as soon as possible so that they won't be subject to the new legislation approved by regime's Parliament.

According to reports, a senior judiciary official has revealed a secret decree given by the head of regime's judiciary 'Sadegh Amoli Larijani' to courts to quickly go ahead with the execution of Sunni prisoners convicted of drug trafficking.

The decree is aimed at preventing the Sunni prisoners from being subject to Parliament;s new legislation, thus replacing their death sentences with other punishments. 

At least 50 Sunni prisoners are subject to head of judiciary's secret decree.

The convicts are mostly held in Birjand, Mashhad, Zahedan, Shiraz, Kerman and Urmia prisons, for whom the death penalty will be applied.

At least 32 Sunni prisoners have been sent to the gallows in Shiraz, Birjand, Chabahar and Kerman prisons over the past few days, due to this secret command.

On November 23, 2016, Regime's parliament passed an emergency motion to add an article to the law on fighting drugs, according to which the number of capital cases for drug-related charges would be reduced. 

This motion by itself acknowledges that death penalty has had no effect on reducing drug use.

Fearing social protests and international pressures particularly those applied by the United Nations and its Human Rights Council, the motion to add an article to the law on fighting drugs was passed while being approved by all regime's entities.

Source: NCR-Iran, February 22, 2017

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