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California: With state executions on hold, death penalty foes rethink ballot strategy

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California advocates of abolishing the death penalty got a jolt of momentum in March, when Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that he would not allow any executions to take place while he was in office.
But after trying twice this decade to persuade voters to end capital punishment, they have no plans to go to the ballot again in 2020. Rather than seeking to build on Newsom’s temporary reprieve for Death Row inmates, activists are taking their own pause.
Grappling with the legacy of their two failed initiatives, advocates are reassessing their strategy and retooling their message. Natasha Minsker, a political consultant who has long been involved with abolition efforts, said the governor’s moratorium has given advocates the opportunity to do long-term planning.
“There’s this excitement and energy in our movement that we haven’t had in a long time,” Minsker said.
Newsom’s executive order caught many Californians by surprise. Although he supported the unsuccessful ballot measures to abolish t…

Iran: Executions in Bushehr, Bandar Abbas and Maragheh

Execution, iran
Iran Human Rights (IHR); November 16, 2019: A man was hanged at the central prison of the Southern Iranian city of Bushehr Wednesday.

According to HRANA, on the morning of Wednesday, November 13, prisoner Mohammad Hossein Soltani was hanged at Bushehr prison in southern Iran. 

He was arrested five years ago for murdering his sister’s husband. 

Out of the 110 people who were executed in the first half of 2019, 83 were sentenced to qisas (retribution in-kind) for murder.

There is a lack of a classification of murder by degree in Iran which results in issuing a death sentence for any kind of murder regardless of intensity and intent.

Man Executed at Bandar Abbas Prison


Iran Human Rights (IHR); November 16, 2019: A man was hanged for murder at the southern Iranian city of Bandar Abbas Thursday.

According to IHR sources, on the early morning of Thursday, November 14, a man was hanged at the central prison of the Iranian city of Bandar Abbas. 

His identity was revealed by IHR sources as Salman Babanzadeh, 33, from the Iranian city of Ghorveh.

“He was sentenced to death for murdering his cousin four years ago. Salman’s family were trying to win the plaintiff’s consent but they failed,” a well-informed source told IHR. 

According to the Iranian Islamic Penal Code (IPC) murder is punishable by qisas which means “retribution in kind” or retaliation. 

In this way, the State effectively puts the responsibility of the death sentence for murder on the shoulders of the victim’s family. 

In qisas cases, the plaintiff has the possibility to forgive or demand diya (blood money). In many cases, the victim's family are encouraged to put the rope is around the prisoner's neck and even carry out the actual execution by pulling off the chair the prisoner is standing on.

Out of the 110 people who were executed in the first half of 2019, 83 were sentenced to qisas (retribution in-kind) for murder.

Man Hanged at Maragheh Prison


Iran Human Rights (IHR); November 16, 2019: A man has been executed for rape charges earlier this year.

According to HRANA, at a time between the end of April and beginning of May, a prisoner was hanged in Maragheh prison. 

His identity was revealed as Vahid Nedamat, 21, from the Iranian city of Maragheh. Neither Iranian authorities nor media announced his execution. 

IHR reported earlier about the execution of a prisoner in Maragheh. 

It seems Vahid Nedamat is the same unidentified person.

Out of the 110 people who were executed in the first half of 2019, 83 were sentenced to qisas (retribution in-kind) for murder.

Source: Iran Human Rights, Staff, November 16, 2019


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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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