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USA | Biden frustrates death penalty opponents with Supreme Court request

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Opponents of capital punishment are expressing frustration with the Biden administration’s request this week that the Supreme Court reinstate the death penalty against Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Critics see the Department of Justice (DOJ) move as inconsistent with President Biden’s calls on the campaign trail to eliminate capital punishment. Outright repeal of the federal death penalty would require legislation, which is unlikely to clear the current Congress given the deep partisan divide. But advocates say Biden could take steps on his own to curtail executions carried out by the federal government and are renewing calls for him to do just that. “This move from the DOJ contravenes the president’s vow to work with Congress to abolish the federal death penalty,” said Kristina Roth, a senior advocate in Amnesty International USA’s criminal justice program. “Regardless of the Supreme Court's decision in this case, President Biden can, and should, commute all federal de

Iran | Prisoner Executed in Ahvaz While on Hunger Strike

Iran Human Rights (IHR); January 28, 2021: Prisoner Ali Motayyeri, who according to Iranian media, was sentenced to death on charges of “premeditated murder with a religious motive,” has been executed in Sheiban Prison, Ahvaz.

According to state-run Tasnim news agency, a prisoner named Ali Motayyeri was executed at Sheiban Prison this morning. He had been sentenced to qisas (retribution-in-kind) and efsad-fil-arz (corruption on earth) for murder.

In a statement on Ali Motayyeri’s execution, the Judiciary of Khuzestan Province wrote: “In a terrorist attack on 7 May 2018, Ali Motayyeri, a terrorist member of ISIS, attacked the IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) base in Sheiban, Khuzestan province and as a result, martyred two active IRGC members on the base named Bashir Hamidi and Hassan Karoun-Bahmanshir.”

Around nine months after his arrest, Branch One of the Ahvaz Criminal Court sentenced Ali to qisas (retribution-in-kind) for the murder of the IRGC members, Bashir Hamidi and Hassan Karoud.

Informed sources have told IHR: “Ali Motayyeri and a few other prisoners had been on a hunger strike and sewn their lips in protest to his unfair death sentence and the prison guards’ treatment of prisoners since January 23."

Ali’s execution in the Arab region of Ahvaz comes at a time when executions and crackdowns have intensified in the Baluch and Kurdish regions in the past few weeks.

As there are no legal distinctions made between murder and manslaughter, whether voluntary or involuntary in Iran, those charged under the umbrella term of “premeditated murder” will receive the death penalty regardless of intent and the circumstances.

Source: iranhr.net, Staff, January 28, 2021


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