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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…

Bangladesh: Mufti Hannan to seek presidential clemency

Mufti Hannan
Mufti Abdul Hannan
Convicted of killing in terrorist attack, the chief of Bangladeshi chapter of Harkat ul Islam, Abdul Hannan, will seek presidential clemency after the apex court dismissed his plea to review death sentence, prison authorities said on Wednesday.

Hannan, also known as Mufti Hannan, expressed his willingness to seek the pardon after officials read out the death warrant to the convict after the Supreme Court rejected his review against the conviction.

"Hannan told us that he would file mercy petition to the president," senior jail superintendent Mizanur Rahman said as the authorities were preparing for execution of the terrorist.

Inspector General of Prisons Brigadier General Syed Iftekhar Uddin told reporters that all preparations were taken to hang the militants.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday released full verdict that upheld its order confirming his death penalty for the 2004 grenade attack on then British High Commissioner to Bangladesh Anwar Choudhury.

Attorney General Mahbube Alam said that the execution of the convicted militant was a matter of time as the Supreme Court dismissed the review petitions of 3 death-row convicts, including Hannan.

A court in Sylhet on December 23, 2008 sentenced Hannan and 2 of his associates - Bipul and Ripon - to death for carrying out grenade attack on the British envoy at a shrine in the north-eastern city.

Choudhury escaped, but 3 people, including 2 security officials were killed in the attack on May 21, 2004.

2 other members of the banned militant group - Muhibullah alias Muhibur Rahman alias Ovi and Mufti Main Uddin alias Abu Zandal - were sentenced to life in prison.

The High Court confirmed the death penalty on February 11, 2016. The convicts however filed appeal with the Appellate Division, which rejected the militant's plea upholding the punishment on December 7, 2016.

Their reviews were dismissed on February 23 this year.

Source: newsnextbd.com, March 23, 2017

Related content: Bangladesh: Mufti Hannan’s death penalty upheld, March 19, 2017

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