Friday, March 28, 2014


The judicial horror unfolding in Egypt at the moment, with 529 pro-Morsi protesters given death sentences as 'terrorists', and another 683 facing execution for the same pretext, coincides with the release of a new Amnesty International report, Death Sentences & Executions: 2013.

China topped the list, judicially executing more people (estimated to be in the thousands) than any other country last year, followed by Iran (369), Iraq (169), Saudi Arabia (79), and the United States (39).

Turning to the section of the report on the Middle East and North Africa, apart from the above Middle Eastern nations, we see the following data on judicial executions: Yemen (13); Kuwait (5); the PA (3, in Gaza); judicial executions could not be confirmed for Egypt and Syria.

No Israel. Of course not! Israel doesn't do judicial executions.

But don't get too carried away. Israel does extra-judicial executions.

No charge. No trial. Just ZAP! Not in AI's report therefore.

In 2013, Israel extra-judicially executed - or ZAPPed - 36 Palestinians.

As Jessica Montell, executive director of Israeli human rights group, B'Tselem, said of this practice: "In [the Israeli 'justice' system] almost no one is required to take responsibility for the killing of Palestinians, and it provides no deterrence and reflects contempt for human life." (B'Tselem report: Israel killed 27 West Bank Palestinians, 9 Gazans in 2013, Gilli Cohen, Haaretz, 31/12/13)

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