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‘A Short Film About Killing’: The movie that brought an end to the Polish death penalty

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The most intellectually challenging film I have ever seen about capital punishment. Definitely a must-see. DPN review and YouTube trailer available in our 'Films & Documentaries' section — DPN editor As far as European cinema goes, there are few figures quite admired in critical circles as the inimitable Krzysztof Kieślowski. Known for his Dekalog series of 1989, as well as The Double Life of Veronique and the Three Colours trilogy, Kieślowski embodied everything so extraordinary about the power of European cinema and that of his native Poland in turn.

In the Shadows of Tyranny: Iran’s Regime and the Death Penalty Dilemma

The Hrana website has reported a troubling surge in death sentences issued by the Iranian regime, with January 2024 setting a grim record compared to the same period in 2023, witnessing a staggering 35 death sentences. Shockingly, within the span of a single month, a total of 86 individuals faced execution.

Even more alarming is the comparison with January 2023, where at least 63 people were executed in Iran, with 23 death sentences handed down. This represents a significant increase, with January 2024 witnessing 23 more executions and 12 additional death sentences compared to the previous year.

A closer examination of the data reveals a disturbing trend: the number of executions consistently exceeds the number of new death sentences issued. This stark contrast suggests either a more aggressive stance by the judicial system or a systematic effort to purge dissenting voices.

Despite mounting international pressure to abolish the death penalty, particularly for non-violent offenses, the Iranian regime persists in using capital punishment as a tool to suppress opposition voices. This was tragically illustrated by the execution of Mohammad Ghobadlou, one of the participants in the 2022 uprising, in January 2024.

In 2023 alone, at least 864 individuals, including 25 women and two juvenile offenders, were executed—a 33% increase compared to the previous year. The scale of these executions is staggering, with Amnesty International reporting over 5,000 executions, including at least 57 juveniles, between January 1, 2012, and July 31, 2023.

Antonio Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, underscored the alarming trend of increasing death sentences in his November 2023 report to the General Assembly, highlighting the urgent need for action.

Furthermore, human rights organizations such as Hengaw have documented the extrajudicial killings of at least 41 porters by the Iranian regime, with 293 individuals injured in the past year—over 85% of whom were targeted by regime security forces.

The gruesome practice of amputating fingers as punishment, exemplified by the recent case of ‘Yousef T’, a 34-year-old construction worker falsely accused of stealing sheep, epitomizes the regime’s disregard for basic human rights and dignity. Despite maintaining his innocence throughout his 13-month imprisonment, ‘Yousef T’ endured the barbaric sentence in Qom’s central prison.

This cruel and archaic punishment stands as a stark reminder of the regime’s brutality and corruption, with regime officials implicated in embezzlement scandals while callously inflicting suffering on innocent citizens.

It is imperative that the international community holds Iran’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, regime officials, and judiciary accountable for these egregious human rights abuses. The persistence of such atrocities underscores the urgent need for concerted global action to demand justice and uphold the dignity of all individuals, regardless of their circumstances.

Source: irannewsupdate.com, Mostafa Aslani, February 9, 2024

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