Japan executions slammed
Two Japanese citizens were executed in Osaka and one Chinese national in Tokyo on July 28, 2009. The three convicted murderers had been on death row for two to three years.
Those are the first executions in Japan since January 2009.
World Coalition member organisations across Asia slammed the killings. “Center for Prisoners’ Rights strongly condemns the barbarian killings conducted by the government of Japan, just after the dissolution of Diet on July 21, which means Justice Minister Eisuke Mori never directly faces the criticism made by Diet members who oppose the death penalty,” wrote the Japanese human rights organisation’s secretary general Maiko Tagusari.
A parliamentary election scheduled for August is expected to yield a new government majority. The opposition Democratic Party, which is tipped to win the election, promised to open a “national debate” on the issue of the death penalty.
Amnesty International’s Japanese section said the executions were flying in the face of “international calls for the abolition of the death penalty”.
In India, Lawyers for Human rights International “condemns the execution” and calls on Japan to end “the barbaric practice of killing people”.
The Taiwan Alliance to End the Death Penalty and the Italian Coalition Against the Death Penalty also expressed shock at the three hangings.
Center for Prisoners’ Rights calls on members of the public to voice their opposition by writing to Minister Mori’s office.
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Photo: Amnesty International protest against the death penalty in Asia – South Korea, October 2008