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LAT: Concerns Grow Over Executions in China (thousands each year)

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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 08:53 AM
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LAT: Concerns Grow Over Executions in China (thousands each year)
Concerns Grow Over Executions in China
Thousands are put to death every year, often after brief trials that are closed to the public.
By Mark Magnier, Times Staff Writer

....Cases such as (Nie Shubin's) have cast a harsh spotlight on China's widespread, and often questionable, use of the death penalty. Now, amid pressure from lawyers, academics, the United Nations and many countries, the government is undertaking a reevaluation.

On Tuesday, government media reported that the Supreme People's Court would regain the authority it lost in 1983 to oversee capital cases. The change in the early 1980s was driven by a desire for speedy justice. According to the China Youth Daily, the nation's highest court is adding three criminal trial courts to handle death penalty review cases in a "truly neutral" fashion.

Legal scholars estimate that this change could reduce executions by 30%. The current system has seen provincial judges order up the death penalty at a fast and furious pace.

Comprehensive death penalty statistics remain a state secret, although local jurisdictions will announce executions when that serves a political purpose. Human rights groups, however, say China executes more people than the rest of the world's governments combined.

Amnesty International found evidence of 3,400 death sentences carried out in 2004 but says the real number may be closer to 10,000 a year. This compares with 59 in the U.S. in 2004. More than 70 countries use the death penalty, but most apply it only in the case of a few extremely violent crimes. China executes people for 68 offenses, many nonviolent, including smuggling, tax evasion, corruption, "endangering national security" and separatism, which includes advocating Tibetan or Taiwanese independence....
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 08:55 AM
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1. another reason for the Freepers to love China
aren't they all gung-ho on the death penalty?
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