The execution of 36 men in Iraq yesterday marks an alarming rise in the authorities’ use of the death penalty in response to the dramatic security threats the country is facing, said Amnesty International today.
The men were convicted over the killing of 1,700 military cadets at Speicher military camp near Trikrit in June 2014, after a deeply-flawed mass trial which lasted only a few hours, and relied on “confessions” extracted under torture.
“These mass executions mark a chilling increase in Iraq’s use of the death penalty,” said Lynn Maalouf, Deputy Director for Research at Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Regional Office.
“Time and time again, Amnesty International has emphasized that victims’ families have the right to truth and called for justice for the atrocities committed by the armed group calling itself the Islamic State. However, executing men who were forced to ‘confess’ under torture and were not given a proper chance to defend themselves is not justice.