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IDPN 2021

International Death Penalty News 2021, Issue 48: Egypt, India, Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, United States of America

November 26, 2021
IDPN 2021 Issue 48


International Death Penalty News 2021On Thursday, November 25, 2021, the Court of Cassation upheld the death penalty against 22 individuals. All are convicted of assassinating national security department officer Mohamed Mabrouk and carrying out 54 other terrorist attacks in the nation. 


Three men convicted of rape have had their death sentences commuted to “rigorous life imprisonment” without the possibility of parole. The three men, along with two others, trapped and repeatedly raped a 22-year-old woman at an abandoned factory in Mumbai. The incident caused public outrage, as women’s safety has been a frequent topic of debate over the past several years. The five men were quickly arrested. Three were sentenced to death, while two of the men were juveniles, making them ineligible for the death penalty. All the men were also accused and convicted in a second rape.


On Sunday, November 14, 2021, 41-year-old Marouf Gholipour was executed in Shiraz Central Prison. Marouf, who was from Kazeroun, was convicted of murder approximately four years ago and sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. His execution has not been reported by officials or state media in the nation.

On Wednesday, November 17, 2021, 30-year-old Sobhan Molayi was executed in Qazvin Central Prison. Sobhan worked as a cabinet maker before being arrested. Sobhan was convicted of murdering a man who was being too friendly with his sister. The two men argued about the relationship, ending with Sobhan killing the other in what he claimed was an honor killing. Sobhan was sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. The execution has not officially been announced by state media or officials.

On November 17, 2021, Rahmat Fereydouni was executed in Qom Central Prison. Executions are usually carried out by hanging in Iran. Rahmat was convicted of murder four years ago. He was sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. His execution has not officially been announced by state media or officials.

On Thursday, November 18, 2021, 35-year-old Mostafa Pourahmad and 40-year-old Mojtaba Bagheri were executed in Rasht Central Prison. Both men were convicted of murder and sentenced to qisas, that is retribution in kind.

On Thursday, November 18, 2021, Shamsedin Ghaljayi, a Baluch man, was executed in Kerman Central Prison. Executions are usually carried out by hanging in the nation. Shamsedin was convicted on drug-related charges. His execution has not officially been announced by state media or officials. So far this year, at least 102 people have been executed on drug-related charges in Iran.

On Wednesday, November 24, 2021, Arman Abdolali was executed in Rajai Shahr Prison. Arman was convicted of murdering his girlfriend, Ghazaleh Shakoor, in 2014. At the time of the crime, Arman was 17 years of age. It is a violation of international law to execute a person for a crime they committed while under the age of 18. Multiple human groups spoke out against his execution, which has also been condemned by the European Union.

On Wednesday, November 24, 2021, Mohammad Safari was executed in Rajai Shahr Prison. He was convicted of murdering a street vendor, Ali Cheraghi, and sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. Before being arrested, Mohammad worked as a municipal officer.

On Thursday, November 25, 2021, Abdolsattar Shehbakhsh and Khan Mohmmad Rahmatzehi were executed in Kerman Central Prison on drug-related charges. Both men are Baluch minorities. Their executions have not been reported by officials or state media. Most executions in Iran are carried out by hanging.

North Korea

A student returning to the hermit kingdom after attending school in China is set to be executed. The unnamed student brought back a copy of the hit Netflix show, Squid Game. He made copies of the show and sold them to others before being caught by the kingdom’s surveillance services. He has been sentenced to death, likely by firing squad. At least one person who bought a copy of the show has been sentenced to life in prison, while others have been sentenced to hard labor. North Korea forbids bringing in materials from the West and South Korea.


For the last 10 years, 37-year-old Sajjad Masih Gill has been in prison on blasphemy charges. In March of this year, after pressure from Islamist leaders, he was sentenced to death. On October 26, 2021, a two-judge division of the Lahore High Court acquitted Sajjad of the charges against him due to insufficient evidence. The court ordered Sajjad released. Sajjad, a Seventh-day Adventist, was quietly released from prison on November 9, 2021, to avoid Islamist outrage.  

On Wednesday, November 24, 2021, Nasir Ali was sentenced to death for raping his daughter. He has also been fined. Nasir has denied the charges against him. Nasir’s father went to the police earlier this year claiming Nasir had raped the child. However, Nasir claims the charges are false and that his father is framing him in an attempt to get his cattle.

United States of America

The Committee on Revision of the Penal Code in California has recommended the state repeal the death penalty. The committee was formed by the state legislature to review the criminal laws in the state. The recommendation to repeal the death penalty was unanimous. In their recommendation, the committee stated that the California death penalty “cannot ensure justice and fairness for all Californians.” There are approximately 700 inmates on death row in the state. No executions have occurred since 2006, and Governor Gavin Newsom currently has a moratorium in place. In recent years, residents of the state have voted to keep capital punishment and to speed up the appeals processes. In its recommendation, the committee has also encouraged Governor Newsom to begin commuting death sentences to remove inmates from death row. The committee also recommends reversing a law enacted by voters in 1990, and retroactively removing inmates from death row if they were convicted using the law.

Personal spiritual advisors are permitted to be in the execution chamber during Oklahoma’s executions, according to new guidelines released by the Oklahoma Corrections Department. The spiritual advisor will have to pass a background check before the execution. The new guidelines come as Bigler Stouffer, a death row inmate scheduled to be executed December 9, seeks a stay of execution. Stouffer also specifically requested that his spiritual advisor be permitted to lay hands on him and pray during the execution, which is also permitted under the new guidelines.

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