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Rights Group: Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq Among Top Global Executioners

The Times of Israel reports: Iran, Saudi Arabia and Iraq were among the top five executioners in the world in 2016, according to a new report by Amnesty International. China still outpaces the rest of the world combined, but Iran comes in at number two, followed by Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Pakistan, with the latter four accounting for 87 percent of the executions that took place in 2016.

Amnesty International reported 1,032 state-sponsored executions worldwide in 2016, excluding China, where the true number is unknown because the government considers it a state secret. The group said it believes China executed thousands, but it didn’t offer a more precise estimate due to a lack of accurate information.

The human rights group Dui Hua estimates about 2,000 executions took place in China last year, down from a 6,500 a decade ago, said the group’s executive director, John Kamm. The tally was based on research into lower-level court cases and contacts with government officials and Chinese and Western legal scholars, Kamm said.

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