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Iraq: 38 hanged in abhorrent mass execution

    December 15, 2017

    Responding to news that 38 people were executed in Iraq today for “terrorism” offences, Lynn Maalouf, Middle East Research Director at Amnesty International said:

    “By carrying out yet another mass execution, the second in the span of three months, the Iraqi authorities have once again displayed a blatant disregard for human life and dignity.

    “In the wake of Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s declaration of victory over the armed group calling itself the Islamic State (IS) on 10 December, it is disheartening to see this week’s celebrations tainted with yet another mass execution. The victims of IS deserve justice, not mass executions carried out after deeply flawed and hasty trials.

    “Individuals who carry out deadly attacks against the civilian population should face justice, but carrying out executions is not the answer. There is no credible evidence that the death penalty deters crime more than a term of imprisonment.

    “The death penalty should not be used in any circumstances and especially in Iraq, where the government has a shameful record of putting people to death after deeply unfair trials and in many cases after being tortured to ‘confess’.”

    Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases without exception, regardless of the nature or the circumstances of the crime; guilt, innocence or other characteristics of the individual; or the method used by the state to carry out the execution. The death penalty is a violation of the right to life and the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.