Amnesty International urges Hamas to halt post-Eid executions

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Amnesty International has recently urged Hamas to halt a public execution against two prisoners after Muslim holidays, a move described by the charity as “deeply disturbing.”

The Islamist group announced that it will carry the execution of the two prisoners in public as “lesson” to others, the report said.

“We acknowledge the right and responsibility of governments to bring to justice those suspected of criminal offences, but the death penalty is cruel and inhuman, and there is no evidence that it deters crime more effectively than other punishments,” Amnesty said.

“Public executions are degrading and compound the cruelty of the death penalty,” said Philip Luther, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Program at Amnesty International.

The human rights organization said that a 23 year-old man has been sentenced to death for “collaboration with an enemy entity.”

A second man was apparently tortured to “confess” to the rape and murder of a six-year-old boy allegedly committed when the suspect was under 18.

According to Amnesty International, “at least 40 prisoners are under sentence of death in Gaza, where torture and other ill-treatment against detainees in the custody of Hamas security agencies are widespread and systematic.”

“We are urging Hamas to immediately halt all executions planned for after Eid al-Fitr, and to go further by establishing a moratorium on the use of the death penalty and commuting all death sentences,” said Luther.

Gaza’s last executions took place on June 22, 2013; the suspects were sentenced to death for “collaboration with an enemy entity.”

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