27 March, 2012

Amnesty International Report: Death Sentences and Executions 2011

Updated 29th March and 31st March

Amnesty International has issued a report - Death Sentences and Executions 2011.  This should be mandatory reading for anyone concerned about the state of human rights in the world today.

In relation to the use of the death penalty for convicted juveniles see Amnesty on the Iranian case of Behnoud Shojee (aged 17 at the time of his offence) - "One Iranian Lawyer's fight to save juveniles from execution"  This is a very powerful piece of animation about the actual case of Shojee who was executed on 11th October 2009.  The victim's family could have prevented the execution but did not do so.

In the United States of America, executions have continued but there are some encouraging signs of a move away from the death penalty in some States.  The Amnesty report states:

While the USA was once again the only

14 March, 2012

International Criminal Court - First Judgment - The Prosecutor v Thomas Lubanga Dyilo

Thomas Lubanga stands convicted, as a co-perpetrator, by the International Criminal Court ICC)  of the war crime of  of conscripting and enlisting children under the age of 15 and using them to participate actively in hostilities from 1 September 2002 to 13 August 2003. It is the first verdict issued by an ICC Trial Chamber.  The court delivering judgment may be seen here.

These crimes were committed in the context of an internal armed conflict that took place in the Ituri (the Democratic Republic of the Congo) and involved the Force patriotique pour la libération du Congo (Patriotic Force for the Liberation of the Congo) (FPLC), led by Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, against the Armée Populaire Congolaise and other militias, including the Force de résistance patriotique en Ituri. A common plan was agreed by Mr Lubanga Dyilo and his co-perpetrators to build an army for the purpose of establishing and maintaining political and military control over Ituri. This resulted in