January 15, 2016

IDPN 2016  Issue 03


Bangladesh: Safayet Hossain Habib, Anwar Hossain, and Rashedul Islam Jhontu were executed by hanging at Jessore Central Jail on Thursday, January 7, 2016.  All three were convicted of participating in opening fire during a rally at Kalidashpur Primary School in Kushtia’s Doulatpur Upazila on February 16, 1999.  Several individuals were killed in the attack.



Iran: On Saturday, January 9, 2016, two unnamed prisoners, ages 33 and 34, were executed by hanging at Lakan in Rasht’s central prison.  Both inmates were executed on drug related charges.


On Sunday, January 10, 2016, three prisoners, identified by initials only, were executed hanging at Larestan Prison in southern Iran.  All three were executed on drug related charges.  Also executed on Sunday was Ghodrat Garavand.  Garavand was executed by hanging at Khorramabad prison for murder.  Additionally, three more unnamed prisoners were executed by hanging at Sari’s central prison on Sunday.  All three were executed on drug related charges.


On Tuesday, January 12, 2016, an inmate, identified by initials only, was publicly executed by hanging.  He was convicted of enmity against God after he and an accomplice allegedly committed rape, piracy, extortion, armed robbery, torture, and physical assault.  His accomplice is believed to have been hanged last April.


Also on Tuesday, four prisoners - Seyed Hamid Hajian, Hossein Toutiannoush, Mostafa Jamshidi, and Mohsen Nasiri - were executed by hanging at Karaj’s central prison in northern Iran.  All were executed on drug related charges.


On Wednesday, January 13, 2016, six prisoners - Aref Shahindeji, Hossein Ezzataleb, Rahman Ranjbar, Alireza Akbari, Arsalan Badyaneh, and Abdul Wahab Hatami - have all been executed by hanging at the central prison in Orumiyeh, which is in northern Iran.  All six inmates were convicted of murder.


On Thursday, January 14, 2016, one prisoner, identified by initials only, was executed at Yazd’s central prison in central Iran.  His crime was not reported.



Kuwait: Two men, an Iranian national and a Kuwaiti national, have been sentenced to death for spying.  The two men were convicted for spying for Iran and Hezbollah.  Twenty-three others were also charged and given various prison sentences.


Pakistan: On Tuesday, January 12, 2016, two men, Muhammad Sardar and Rasheed Ahmad, were executed by hanging in two separate jails.  Sardar was executed at Toba Tek Singh District Jail for the 1993 murder of Amanullah.  Ahmad was executed at New Central Jail in Bahawalpur for the 2004 murder of Muhammad Shafi.



Palestine:  A military court in the Hamas run Gaza Strip has sentenced four to death for “spying for Israel.”  Only one of the men, an unnamed 23-year-old, are in custody.  The other three were tried in absentia.



Saudi Arabia:  On Monday, January 4, 2016, Ahmed Obeid al-Amri al-Harbi was executed by hanging in Qassim province.  Ahmed was convicted of murdering another individual following a dispute between the two.


On Wednesday, January 6, 2016, Saud bin Mohammed al-Shalwi was executed by beheading in Taif, in the western part of the kingdom.  He was executed for the murder of Mohammed bin Safar al-Harithi after the two had a dispute.


On Sunday, January 10, 2016, Jinat Damti Farid, and Ethiopian national, was executed by beheading in the Makkah region.  Jinat was executed for the murder of Saudi national Ghaliah Bint Eidha Bin Saeed Al Harthi.  Jinat murdered Ghaliah by taking an axe to Ghaliah’s head several times while she was praying.  Jinat also stole two rings and cash from the women she murdered.



United States of America:  On Tuesday, January 12, 2016, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that Florida's current method for sentencing inmates to death is unconstitutional.  Currently, juries recommend to a judge that a sentence of death be given and the judge then decides the final outcome, meaning a judge could give a sentence of death when the jury recommends a life term.  In Florida, a jury’s recommendation does not have to be unanimous.  According to Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who was writing for seven of the nine Supreme Court justices, “The Sixth Amendment requires a jury, not a judge, to find each fact necessary to impose a sentence of death.  A jury’s mere recommendation is not enough.”  It is not yet certain if the ruling will be retroactive or only apply to future sentences.


Although procuring execution drugs has remained difficult for many states, Texas has announced that they have enough drugs to carry out the nine executions scheduled, so far, for this year.  State law in Texas allows the state to not publicly reveal the name of execution drug supplier, although that law is being contested.



Zimbabwe:  At least 14 of the 117 inmates on death row in the nation are seeking to have their sentences commuted to life in prison.  The nation, which carries out executions by hanging, does not currently have a hangman on staff.  The inmates, all of whom have been charged with murder or treason, are arguing that it is psychological torture for those awaiting executions.  The lawyer representing the inmates also hopes, in the near future, to raise the question of the constitutionality of the nation’s death penalty.