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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…

Indonesia: Court rejects Ahok's blasphemy appeal

Former Jakarta governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama
The Supreme Court has rejected former Jakarta governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama's case review petition against his blasphemy conviction, an official with the court has said. 

Three judges — Artidjo Alkostar, Salman Luthan and Margiatmo — rejected the former Jakarta governor's challenge against his conviction, which sentenced him to two years in prison.

"The appeal has been rejected," court's spokesperson Suhadi told The Jakarta Post on Monday.

More than nine months after being convicted of blasphemy, Ahok officially challenged his conviction through a case review petition to the court.

Ahok's lawyer and sister, Fify Lety Indra, said she believed the North Jakarta District Court had made a mistake in declaring Ahok guilty of blasphemy. 

She said the guilty verdict against Buni Yani, a communications lecturer found guilty of tampering with video footage of a speech given by Ahok that was used as evidence to lodge the blasphemy allegations against the former Jakarta governor, was the basis for the case review request.

"The legal argument for our petition is that the judges [at the district level] made a mistake in their verdict [on Ahok], particularly in relation to Buni Yani's verdict." she said after the preliminary hearing.

Source: The Jakarta Post, March 26, 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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