Responding to the news that at least 42 people were executed in Iraq yesterday on “terrorism” charges, Lynn Maalouf, Middle East Research Director at Amnesty International said:
“This mass execution is a shocking display of the Iraqi authorities’ resort to the death penalty to try to show they are responding to security threats.
“There can be no doubt that individuals who carry out deadly attacks against the civilian population should face justice, but the Iraqi authorities need to recognise that carrying out executions is not the answer, and will not make the country or its people safer.
“The Iraqi authorities have a deplorable track record when it comes to use of the death penalty. In many cases previously people have been put to death after deeply unfair trials and in some cases after being tortured to ‘confess’.
“The death penalty is an irreversible and reprehensible punishment that should not be used in any circumstances and there is no evidence to show that it deters crime more than any other means of punishment.”