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No Second Chances: What to Do After a Botched Execution

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Ohio tried and failed to execute Alva Campbell. The state shouldn't get a second chance.
The pathos and problems of America's death penalty were vividly on display yesterday when Ohio tried and failed to execute Alva Campbell. Immediately after its failure Gov. John Kasich set June 5, 2019, as a new execution date.
This plan for a second execution reveals a glaring inadequacy in the legal standards governing botched executions in the United States.
Campbell was tried and sentenced to die for murdering 18-year-old Charles Dials during a carjacking in 1997. After Campbell exhausted his legal appeals, he was denied clemency by the state parole board and the governor.
By the time the state got around to executing Campbell, he was far from the dangerous criminal of 20 years ago. As is the case with many of America's death-row inmates, the passage of time had inflicted its own punishments.
The inmate Ohio strapped onto the gurney was a 69-year-old man afflicted with serious ailm…

Saudi spin over juvenile on death row Ali al-Nimr

The Saudi Arabian authorities have tried to distract from their illegal use of the death penalty by publicising the brief visit of Ali al-Nimr, a young man sentenced to death for attending a protest when he was just 17, to see his father in hospital.

Ali's father Mohammad was shot in the leg by Saudi Arabian security forces during a brutal crackdown on opposition in Al-Awamiyah in eastern Saudi Arabia. Mohammad al-Nimr tweeted a photograph of Ali by his bedside on Friday.

Despite the fact they were responsible for his father's injuries, the Saudi authorities only allowed Ali to visit for one hour before returning him to prison with the threat of execution still hanging over him. Ali was escorted by Saudi security forces throughout his visit.

Commenting, Maya Foa, director of Reprieve, said: "This is a cynical piece of Saudi spin. Ali should be permanently back with his family and if they had any compassion or sense of justice, King Salman and Crown Prince bin Nayef would admit he should never have been convicted of any crime and release him and all other juveniles from the threat of execution immediately. A one hour visit to hospital cannot make up for years of abuse suffered by innocent young protestors."

Ali's death sentence was confirmed by Saudi Arabia's controversial Specialised Criminal Court in 2015, following an internationally-condemned trial in which a confession extracted under torture was relied upon. Ali is among several juveniles facing execution for participating in protests, including Dawood al-Marhoun, just 17, and Abdullah al-Zahra, just 15, when he was arrested.

The Saudis have launched a widely criticised military campaign in the town of al- Awamiyah in Al-Qatif, which has seen dozens injured and condemnation by the UN.

On 6 June the Specialised Criminal Court upheld 14 death sentences against protesters, including a disabled young man Mounir al-Ahdam, amid fears their execution could be expedited.

Source: Reprieve, June 17, 2017

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