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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…

8 Iraqis from same family risk death penalty over IS killings

Khasfah sinkhole
BAGHDAD : Eight Iraqis from the same family risk being sentenced to death after admitting to involvement in killing 370 people while members of the Islamic State group, the judiciary said Wednesday.

The men face charges under Iraq's anti-terror legislation over the killings at Khasfah, a sinkhole in northern Iraq just eight kilometres from Mosul, the former capital of IS's self-declared "caliphate".

"The eight terrorists arrested have admitted to participating in the Khasfah massacre," said Supreme Judicial Council spokesman Abdel Sattar Bayraqdar. "They participated in the execution of 370 civilians and members of security forces and the arrest of 400 people in Mosul," who were then held in IS jails, he added in a statement.

After IS overran Mosul in 2014, Khasfah became one of Iraq's largest mass graves as jihadists carried out a series of executions at the site.

Witnesses said the victims were blindfolded and had their hands tied behind their backs, before being forced to kneel. They were then shot and pushed into the crater.

More than 300 people, including around 100 foreigners, have been sentenced to death or life in prison by Iraqi courts over their membership of IS, according to judicial sources.

Iraq declared victory in December over the jihadist group, which at its peak controlled nearly a third of the country as well as large swathes of neighbouring Syria.

Source: Agence France-Presse, August 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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