Reports have emerged today of 12 secret executions carried out by the Iraqi authorities, bringing the number of prisoners put to death since Sunday to 38, Amnesty International said.
“The increasing use of the death penalty in Iraq will only fuel more violence as many of those executed are often convicted after grossly unfair trials,” said Said Boumedouha, Deputy Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme.
“The only way to deal effectively with the security threats faced by the country is for the Iraqi authorities to address their deeply flawed justice system, in which ‘confessions’ extracted under torture are used as evidence in court and the execution of prisoners is routine.”
On 21 January the Iraqi Ministry of Justice issued a statement confirming that the authorities had executed 26 men on Sunday, two days earlier. One of these was Adel al-Mashehadani, known to have carried out a number of sectarian attacks, according to the Justice Ministry.
Amnesty International has confirmed through independent sources that at least 12 further men were also executed.