International Death Penalty News 2022, Issue 11: Bangladesh, Egypt, Iran, Russia, Saudi Arabia, United States of America
International Death Penalty News 2022
March 18, 2022
On Tuesday, March 15, 2022, two people were executed at Cumilla Central Jail. The two men were identified as Shipon Hawladar and Naimul Islam. The executions were carried out by hanging. Shipon and Naimul were convicted in connection with the murder of Shafiuddin Ahmed, a Chattogram Railway official and freedom fighter, who was killed in his home on June 14, 2003. Thirteen people were arrested in connection with the crime. Shipon and Naimul were sentenced to death. Seven others were given life in prison, while four others were acquitted due to lack of evidence.
On Tuesday, March 15, 2022, four men were executed. They have been identified as Abdullah Mohamed Shoukry, Mahmoud Abdel Tawab Morsi, Mahmoud Abdel Hamid al-Geneidy, and Ahmed Salama Ashmawy. The four men were convicted of “politically motivated” crimes. They were allegedly tortured into confessing, which then provided the basis for their trial, as there was a lack of other evidence in their cases. All four men, along with 32 others, were charged with joining a banned group that carried out an attack that killed eight police officers in Helwan on January 9, 2016.
On Wednesday, March 16, 2022, seven men were executed. All seven were convicted on “politically motivated cases. A human rights group claims that the prisoners were tortured and that there was a lack of evidence in the case. Since President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi came to power in 2014, a total of 105 people have been given death sentences for alleged political reasons.
On Wednesday, March 2, 2022, 39-year-old Seyed Vahid Tabatabaei, a Varamin native, was executed in Rajai Shahr Prison. Seyed was convicted of murder and sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. His execution has not been reported by state officials or the media.
On Saturday, March 12, 2022, Baluch prisoner, 48-year-old Alam Yar-Ahmadzehi, was executed in Khash Prison. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. Alam had killed another person during a fight. There is no legal distinction in Iranian law between purposefully killing someone and accidentally killing a person. All are charged with premeditated murder and, if convicted, are eligible to be sentenced to death.
On Sunday, March 13, 2022, 30-year-old Hafizollah Rakhshani was executed in Zahedan Central Prison. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to qisas, that is, retribution in kind. He was arrested in 2014. There is no legal distinction in Iranian law between purposefully killing someone and accidentally killing a person. All are charged with premeditated murder and, if convicted, are eligible to be sentenced to death. His execution has not been reported by state officials or the media.
On Monday, March 14, 2022, Ebrahim Nasirkhah was executed in Urmia Central Prison. He was convicted and sentenced to death on drug-related charges. His execution has not been reported by state officials or the media.
As President Vladimir Putin, and others, continue to insist that their invasion of Ukraine is a special military operation to disarm Ukraine and detain its alleged Neo-Nazi leaders, some pundits are now calling for public hanging of Ukrainian officials once Russia gains control of the country. Trials would be conducted by a military tribunal. According to European intelligence, Russia has already drafted plans for public executions in Ukraine after cities are captured. Russia would also crackdown on protests and enact violent crowd controlling measures, including arrested protesters, as is currently being done in Russia.
On Tuesday, March 15, 2022, Russia quit the Council of Europe. The Council of Europe is a human rights group that seeks to uphold human rights and rule of law. It had suspended Russia’s membership at the end of last month and has since threatened Russia with expulsion. As a member of the group, Russia could not carry out executions. By leaving the group, it is thought that Russia may resume executions.
On Saturday, March 12, 2022, 81 people were killed in a mass execution. The method of execution was not stated, although executions are traditionally carried out by beheading. Seventy-three of those executed were Saudi citizens, while seven were Yemenis and one was Syrian. Those executed were convicted of various crimes including murder. Some of those executed were members of terrorist groups like al-Qaida, the Islamic State, and supporters of Yemen’s Houthi rebels. State officials released a statement saying all those executed were given their full rights under Saudi law. The mass execution has resulted in worldwide criticism, with allegations that those executed were tortured and had trials that were carried out in secret. This is the largest mass execution to ever occur in the kingdom.
Raif Badawi, a Saudi blogger, was arrested in 2012 for “insulting Islam through electronic channels” and “going beyond the realm of obedience.” In 2008, he had established an online forum that encouraged religious and political debate for matters in Saudi Arabia. After being arrested, he was charged and convicted, receiving a sentence of 1,000 lashes. He has now been freed, although he is subject to a 10-year travel ban. His wife and family fled the kingdom after his arrest over concerns for their safety.
United States of America
On Wednesday, March 16, 2022, Romell Broom was scheduled to be executed in Ohio. Romell died on death row while awaiting his execution. He was 65 years of age. Romell was convicted of the rape and murder of 14-year-old Tryna Middleton in Cleveland, Ohio, on September 21, 1984. Romell had previously received several execution dates. One of Romell’s execution was stayed after a medical team attempted to locate a vein for 35-40 minutes, at 18 different injection sites. While the team was able to locate veins, they were unable to establish an IV line. This failed execution attempt led to years of legal battles as Ohio attempted to try and execute him again. Romell died on death row on December 27, 2021, of complications related to covid-19.
Legislators in Florida passed a bill on March 7, 2022, that conceals the identities of many of those who participate in the execution process. This included suppliers of execution drugs. The bill will now be sent to the governor to sign into law. Meanwhile, a similar bill failed in the Senate in Idaho. Supports of these secrecy bills claim that they are necessary to protect drug suppliers from harassment and/or intimidation from death penalty opponents. Opponents of the secrecy bills allege that the bills prevent crucial oversight of the death penalty process.
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