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Will the U.S. Finally End the Death Penalty?

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In the past, abolition efforts have faced a backlash—but Gavin Newsom’s moratorium may be different.
The American death penalty is extraordinarily fragile, with death sentences and executions on the decline. Public support for the death penalty has diminished. The practice is increasingly marginalized around the world. California, with its disproportionately large share of American death-row inmates, announces an end to the death penalty. The year? 1972. That’s when the California Supreme Court declared the death penalty inconsistent with the state’s constitutional prohibition of cruel or unusual punishments—only to have the death penalty restored a year later through popular initiative and legislation.
On Wednesday, again, California walked back its commitment to the death penalty. Though not full-fledged abolition, Governor Gavin Newsom declared a moratorium on capital punishment lasting as long as his tenure in office, insisting that the California death penalty has been an “abject…

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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