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In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

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To cope with his dread, John Kitzhaber opened his leather-bound journal and began to write.
It was a little past 9 on the morning of Nov. 22, 2011. Gary Haugen had dropped his appeals. A Marion County judge had signed the murderer's death warrant, leaving Kitzhaber, a former emergency room doctor, to decide Haugen's fate. The 49-year-old would soon die by lethal injection if the governor didn't intervene.
Kitzhaber was exhausted, having been unable to sleep the night before, but he needed to call the families of Haugen's victims.
"I know my decision will delay the closure they need and deserve," he wrote.
The son of University of Oregon English professors, Kitzhaber began writing each day in his journal in the early 1970s. The practice helped him organize his thoughts and, on that particular morning, gather his courage.
Kitzhaber first dialed the widow of David Polin, an inmate Haugen beat and stabbed to death in 2003 while already serving a life sentence fo…

Iran: 2 Hanged on Drug Charges, 17 at Imminent Risk of Execution

Public execution in Iran
Around the end of May, 2 prisoners were reportedly hanged on drug related charges - 1 at Maragheh Prison (East Azerbaijan province) and the other at Minab Prison (Hormozgan province).

According to close sources, the execution in Maragheh Prison was carried out on Friday May 26. The prisoner has been identified as Fakhroldin Roshani. Mr. Roshani was reportedly arrested in 2012 at the age of 34. The execution in Minab Prison was reportedly carried out on Saturday May 27. The prisoner has been identified as Afshar Beiglou, 21 years of age.

A source who asked to be annonymous told Iran Human Rights: Afshar was a driver of a moving truck. In 2010, when he was delivering furniture from Urmia to Minab, approximately 2 kilograms and 700 grams of opium and crystal meth were planted in his truck. He never confessed at any point and always insisted that he was innocent. Nonetheless, in 2011, he was sentenced to death by a court in Minab and was executed on the 1st day of Ramadan."

Iranian official sources, including the media and Judiciary, have not announced these 2 executions.

Iranian parliament members had formerly requested from the Judiciary to stop drug related executions for at least 5,000 prisoners pending further investigation. However, the request has not stopped the Judiciary from carrying out death sentences for prisoners with drug related charges.

110 Death Row Prisoners in Zanjan Prison / 17 in Imminent Danger of Execution


Approximately half of the prisoners in Zanjan Prison are held on drug related charges. 

There are about 2,500 prisoners in Zanjan Prison, and about 110 of them are sentenced to death. 

This prison has a ward for juvenile offenders, and among the prisoners in this ward are 11 teenagers under the age of 18.

Among the 110 death row prisoners, at least 17 of them have had their death sentences confirmed by Iran's Supreme Court and sent for implementation.

A close source tells Iran Human Rights: "It is highly likely that the execution sentences of these 17 prisoners will be carried out right after Ramadan."

The identities of the 17 prisoners:

1) Hamza Rahimpour, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2014.

2) Najaf Sidi, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2011.

3) Mohammad Ali Yari, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2013.

4) Bahman Pirouzi, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2014.

5) Jamshid Allah Verdi, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2011.

6) Jalil Dadyarvand, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2012.

7) Mostafa Hassanzadeh, sentenced to death on murder charges, arrested in 2010.

8) Ali Kashefi, sentenced to death on murder charges, arrested in 2011.

9) Abbas Savaghi, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2015.

10) Mohammad Feyzabadi, sentenced to death on drug related charges, arrested in 2014.

11) Hossein Ali Mahdavi, sentenced to death on murder charges, arrested in 2011.

12) Yassin Abedi, sentenced to death on murder charges, arrested in 2011.

There are 5 Afghan citizens who are in imminent danger of execution. These 5 prisoners have been detained for the past 6 years.

Source: Iran Human Rights, June 22, 2017

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