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Why Texas’ ‘death penalty capital of the world’ stopped executing people

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Since the Supreme Court legalized capital punishment in 1976, Harris County, Texas, has executed 126 people. That's more executions than every individual state in the union, barring Texas itself.
Harris County's executions account for 23 percent of the 545 people Texas has executed. On the national level, the state alone is responsible for more than a third of the 1,465 people put to death in the United States since 1976.
In 2017, however, the county known as the "death penalty capital of the world" and the "buckle of the American death belt" executed and sentenced to death a remarkable number of people: zero.
This is the first time since 1985 that Harris County did not execute any of its death row inmates, and the third year in a row it did not sentence anyone to capital punishment either.
The remarkable statistic reflects a shift the nation is seeing as a whole.
“The practices that the Harris County District Attorney’s Office is following are also signifi…

Iran: Five Prisoners Executed on Drug, Armed Robbery Charges

Public hanging, Iran
Iran Human Rights (JULY 18 2017): Four prisoners were reportedly hanged at Isfahan Central Prison, and a prisoner was reportedly hanged at Chabahar Prison.

According to close sources, on the morning of Monday July 17, four prisoners were hanged at Isfahan Central Prison. 

Iran Human Rights has obtained the identities of two of the prisoners: Saeed Diyagar, charged with 800 grams of heroin, and Morteza Barghi, charged with 2.5 kilograms of heroin. 

The other two prisoners were reportedly hanged on Moharebeh (enmity against God) through armed robbery charges. 

Iran Human Rights has not been able to confirm the identities of these two prisoners. 

One of these prisoners reportedly stabbed himself with a knife in order to delay his execution. The prisoner was reportedly given stitches then transferred to solitary confinement in preparation for his execution.

'Morteza Barghi was earning money from beading work in the prison in order to support his wife and child," an informed source told Iran Human Rights.

The Baluch Activists Campaign has reported on the execution of one prisoner on the morning of Sunday July 16 at Chabahar Prison (Sistan & Baluchestan province, southern Iran). 

The prisoner has been identified as Akhardad Hamli. The prisoner was reportedly arrested eight years ago on drug related charges.

Executions for drug related charges are still being carried out in Iran, even though the general outline of a bill to reform the death penalty for drug charges was approved by the Iranian Parliament

If the final bill is approved, the death sentences for many prisoners with drug charges will be commuted to a prison sentence.

Iranian official sources, including the Judiciary and the state-run media, have not announced any of these executions.

Source: Iran Human Rights, July 18, 2017

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