Thousands at risk of execution as Pakistan lifts death penalty moratorium


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(Amnesty International[) Thousands of death row prisoners in Pakistan have been brought a step closer to the gallows today as Pakistan’s government confirmed a change in its policy on the death penalty by announcing that executions would resume for all capital crimes, Amnesty International said.

“This shameful retreat to the gallows is no way to resolve Pakistan’s pressing security and law and order problems,” said Rupert Abbott, Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia-Pacific Director.

“Three people have already been executed this year for non-terrorism-related offences. Today’s announcement is a chilling confirmation of the extent of the government’s execution plans.”

Last December, authorities in Pakistan partially lifted a moratorium on the death penalty which had been in place since 2008. Coming in the wake of a massacre of mostly schoolchildren in Peshawar, this relaxation of the ban allowed the death penalty to be used only in terrorism cases.

However, the 24…

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