Amnesty Moves to Stop 128 Iraqi Executions

Says international standards may have been ignored in trials
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Mar 13, 2009 10:43 AM CDT
Iraqi prisoners exercise in a prison compound in central Baghdad, Iraq,Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2008.    (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
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(Newser) – Amnesty International has called for Iraq not to execute 128 prisoners sentenced to death, saying their trials may not have conformed with international rules, Reuters reports. Amnesty says Iraq should release the names of and charges against the prisoners, noting that capital punishment is an ineffective threat when suicide bombing is rampant. The sentences "comply with the law and meet international standards," a rep for the judiciary said.

“Iraq's creaking judicial system is simply unable to guarantee fair trials in ordinary criminal cases, and even less so in capital cases," said an Amnesty director. “We fear that numerous people have gone to their death after unfair trials.” The judiciary spokesman said 125 prisoners are set for execution, and their case details are available.