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Death sentences and executions in 2013 33

whether executions had taken place. On 9 March, 21 death sentences were handed down by the New Cairo Criminal Court in connection with the Port Said football violence, when 74 people were killed at a match in 2012.55 The investigations into the incident and trial were marred by reports that some of the defendants had been subjected to torture and other illtreatment in detention. More than two years after the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak, human rights violations continued. In January, the Court of Cassation accepted appeals by the Prosecutor General as well as by Hosni Mubarak and former Interior Minister Habib El Adly – both sentenced to prison terms in 2012 for involvement in the killings of protesters in the 2011 uprising – and ordered a re-trial. In July, Mohamed Morsi was ousted from office and detained. Both Mubarak and Morsi now face trials that could lead to the death penalty.56 The current authorities in Egypt have proposed new counter-terrorism legislation, which would expand the scope of the death penalty. Drafts seen by Amnesty International impose capital punishment for a wide range of offences, including establishing a “terrorist organization”, taking part in “terrorist acts” that result in deaths, or leading “gangs” to attack the security forces. The authorities designated the Muslim Brotherhood movement as a terrorist organization in December, raising concerns that the death penalty could be imposed on its members. On 1 December, the Constituent Assembly approved a new draft Constitution, replacing the one passed under Mohamed Morsi’s administration in 2012.57 The text, among other things, still allows for the military trial of civilians, but is silent with regard to the death penalty. Amnesty International opposes the trials of civilians by military courts, which are fundamentally unfair and breach a number of fair trial safeguards. Military courts handed down at least two death sentences in 2013. Executions in Iran rose even further during 2013. After the election on 14 June of Hassan Rouhani as Iran’s new President, some steps to improve the country’s image were undertaken, such as the release of possibly dozens of political prisoners, including one under sentence of death. However, there were no indications that his election led to changes in Iran’s application of the death penalty. Iranian authorities or state-controlled or -sanctioned media officially acknowledged 369 executions (358 men and 11 women), a rise of 18% from 2012. However, there is credible evidence that large numbers of executions were carried out in secret, and reliable sources reported at least 335 additional executions (including at least 18 women). This would bring the total for 2013 to at least 704. Reports indicate that at least 11 of the executed may have been aged under 18 at the time of their alleged crimes. At least 44 executions were carried out in public, usually using cranes which lifted the condemned person by a noose around the neck in front of a crowd of spectators. At least 91 new death sentences were reported as imposed, but the true number is almost certainly much higher. Executions in 2013 were mostly carried out following convictions for murder, drug trafficking, rape, espionage and vaguely worded offences of moharebeh (“enmity against God”) and ifsad fil arz (“corruption on earth”). The crime of moharebeh is principally aimed at armed insurrection, but in practice has been applied to cases where the accused have not taken up arms, but allegedly were associated with organizations that have been proscribed in Iran. The scope of the death penalty in Iran remained broad and included as capital

Amnesty International March 2014

Index: ACT 50/001/2014

Death sentences and executions 2013  

This report is also available in Arabic, Farsi, French, Russian and Spanish at the following link: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/AC...

Death sentences and executions 2013  

This report is also available in Arabic, Farsi, French, Russian and Spanish at the following link: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/AC...

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