2018 Death Penalty report: Saudi Arabia’s False Promise

With crown prince Mohammed bin Salman at the helm, 2018 was a deeply violent and barbaric year for Saudi Arabia, under his de facto leadership.
PhotoDeera Square is a public space located in front of the Religious Police building in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in which public executions (usually by beheading) take place. It is sometimes known as Justice Square and colloquially called Chop Chop Square. After Friday prayers, police and other officials clear the area to make way for the execution to take place. After the beheading of the condemned, the head is stitched to the body which is wrapped up and taken away for the final rites.
This year execution rates of 149 executions, shows an increase from the previous year of three executions, indicating that death penalty trends are soaring and there is no reversal of this trend in sight.
The execution rates between 2015-2018 are amongst the highest recorded in the Kingdom since the 1990s and coincide with the ascension of king Salman to the t…

Death penalty debate rekindled in Turkey

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Speculation surrounding the reintroduction of the death penalty has heightened in Turkey following comments made by head of a minor Turkish party allied with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), Cumhuriyet newspaper said.

Mustafa Destici, leader of the Great Unity Party (BBP), suggested a proposal to reinstate the death penalty for offences such as murder, treason and sexual offences against children would be introduced to Turkey's parliament in October. 

He also suggested a referendum could be held in which the electorate could decide on the issue. 

Debate about the death penalty, abolished in 2004, has been ongoing in Turkey since the attempted coup of July 2016, with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, having frequently said he would endorse any legislation that reinstates the punishment.

However implementing any such decision would be problematic according to Ozturk Turkdogan, head of the Turkish Human Rights Association (IHD). 

Turkdogan, a lawyer, pointed out that Destici's proposal would require changing Turkey's constitution, rather than laws and that gaining the necessary numbers of votes in Turkey's 600 seat parliaments to do this, or even to bring the issue to a referendum, would be difficult.

He also pointed out that Turkey is a signatory to the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Additional Protocol No. 2 and a member of the European Court of Human Rights, both of which prohibit the death penalty.

Any reintroduction of the death penalty, Turkdogan said, would also be tantamount to "economic suicide", because it would result in the official end of Turkey's decades old-bid for European Union membership.

Source: ahvalnews.com, August 6, 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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