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Capital Punishment in the United States Explained

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In our Explainer series, Fair Punishment Project lawyers help unpackage some of the most complicated issues in the criminal justice system. We break down the problems behind the headlines - like bail, civil asset forfeiture, or the Brady doctrine - so that everyone can understand them. Wherever possible, we try to utilize the stories of those affected by the criminal justice system to show how these laws and principles should work, and how they often fail. We will update our Explainers monthly to keep them current. Read our updated explainer here.
To beat the clock on the expiration of its lethal injection drug supply, this past April, Arkansas tried to execute 8 men over 1 days. The stories told in frantic legal filings and clemency petitions revealed a deeply disturbing picture. Ledell Lee may have had an intellectual disability that rendered him constitutionally ineligible for the death penalty, but he had a spate of bad lawyers who failed to timely present evidence of this claim -…

Death penalty in Turkey would mean end to EU accession talks: Juncker

BERLIN — The European Union should continue accession negotiations with Turkey but a reintroduction of the death penalty would clearly put an end to the process, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Wednesday.

Turkey abolished the death penalty in 2004 as part of a campaign for EU membership.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has said he will approve its reinstatement if parliament submits such a proposal or if the measure is backed in a referendum.

“I am not of the opinion that the accession negotiations with Turkey should be stopped now,” Juncker said in Berlin during a debate with students about the future of Europe.

Juncker offers a warning


European officials should still try to convince Turkey that it was in its own interest to adopt reforms and move towards Europe instead of turning away from the continent and its values, Juncker said.

“If Turkey will ever become a member state, I do not know,” Juncker said.

He said he recently made clear in a long conversation with Erdogan that a reintroduction of the death penalty in Turkey would be a red line in accession talks.

“I told him: If you reintroduce the death penalty, then it's time to end,” Juncker said.

Tensions are high


Tensions between Turkey and the EU are high over rights and security issues, but the bloc depends on the help of NATO ally Ankara on migration and the conflict in Syria.

After meeting European Council President Donald Tusk and Juncker last week in Brussels, Erdogan was quoted as saying he had been presented with a new 12-month timetable for renewing ties.

Source: Reuters, May 31, 2017

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