Iraq executes 26 on terrorism offenses

The Iraq Ministry of Justice announced on Jan. 21 the execution of 26 Iraqi nationals for terrorism-related offenses. A statement from the Ministry website said the executions took place on two days before. Human rights groups have long opposed the use of capital punishment in Iraq and the overarching legal system employed in the country, where reports of torture and forced confessions have surfaced. According to an annual report by advocacy organization Human Rights Watch, Iraq executed at least 151 people in 2013, up from 129 in 2012, and 68 in 2011. According to the report, up to 48 criminal offenses are subject to the death penalty under Iraqi law. Iraqi officials defend capital punishment on the grounds it is sanctioned by Islam and it is an effective way to curb the insurgency in the country.

From Jurist, Jan. 21. Used with permission.