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Pope Declares Death Penalty Inadmissible in All Cases

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ROME — Pope Francis has declared the death penalty inadmissible in all cases because it is “an attack” on the “dignity of the person,” the Vatican announced on Thursday, in a definitive shift in Roman Catholic teaching that could put enormous pressure on lawmakers and politicians around the world.
Francis, who has spoken out against capital punishment before — including in 2015 in an address to Congress — added the change to the Catechism, the collection of beliefs for the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.
The revision says the church would work “with determination” for the abolition of capital punishment worldwide.
“I think this will be a big deal for the future of the death penalty in the world,” said John Thavis, a Vatican expert and author. “People who work with prisoners on death row will be thrilled, and I think this will become a banner social justice issue for the church,” he added.
Sergio D’Elia, the secretary of Hands Off Cain, an association that works to abolish capital puni…

2 years on from mass execution, Saudi repression continues under new Crown Prince

Mohammed bin Salman
Two years since the Saudi authorities carried out a mass execution of 47 people, human rights organization Reprieve has warned of fresh repression in the Kingdom under the new Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman.

On 2nd January 2016, Saudi Arabia executed 47 people in one day. 

Among them were several political protesters and juveniles. 

Research by Reprieve has shown that in 2017, several smaller mass executions were carried out in the Kingdom, with 141 people executed overall. 

Some 70% of the year's executions were carried out after Mohammed bin Salman took power in June.

Reprieve has raised concerns for 14 political protesters who face imminent execution, after their death sentences were upheld in July 2017. 

The 14 were convicted on the basis of 'confessions' extracted through torture. Among them is a disabled man, Munir al-Adam, and a juvenile, Mujtaba al-Sweikat. 

The new year will see Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman being hosted in London by Prime Minister Theresa May.

Commenting, Maya Foa, Director of Reprieve, said:

“Two years on from a mass execution that saw political protesters – including children – killed, the government of Saudi Arabia shows no interest in halting a brutal wave of repression. Hundreds of people have been executed in the last two years, and now several young protesters face imminent execution on Mohammed bin Salman’s watch. The international community – including Theresa May, who is soon to host the new Crown Prince – must hold him to his promises of ‘reform’ by demanding a halt to all executions immediately.” 

Source: Reprieve, January 2, 2018


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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