Baghdad (AFP) – Iraq has hanged 42 prisoners condemned to death for crimes including kidnapping, killing members of the security forces, car bombings and other attacks, a justice ministry statement said on Monday.
It said Sunday’s executions were carried out in Nasiriyah prison in the south and that those put to death were convicted under Iraq’s counter-terrorism law.
Iraq has faced widespread criticism from diplomats, analysts and human rights groups who say that due to a flawed justice system, those being executed are not necessarily guilty of the crimes for which they were sentenced to die.
Lynn Maalouf, Amnesty International’s Middle East Research Director, condemned the latest executions and said that use of the death penalty “will not make the country or its people safer.”
“The Iraqi authorities have a deplorable track record when it comes to use of the death penalty. In many cases previously people have been put to death after deeply unfair trials and in some cases after being tortured to ‘confess’,” Maalouf said in a statement.