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Singapore carries out two more executions: activists

#Singapore #carries #executions #activists

Singapore on Thursday hanged two drug traffickers in what activists called “shameful and inhumane punishment,” bringing the city-state’s number of executions to four since March.

The latest executions come after April’s hanging of a mentally disabled man sparked widespread international outrage, with opposition from the European Union and the United Nations, among others.

Singapore has some of the toughest anti-drug laws in the world and insists the death penalty remains an effective deterrent to human trafficking, despite growing pressure to abolish it.

Those executed on Thursday were Kalwant Singh, a 32-year-old from neighboring Malaysia, and Singaporean Norasharee Gous, prominent human rights activist Kirsten Han said.

Han told AFP that Kalwant’s sister received his death certificate and that Norasharee’s family took his remains to a mosque.

Prison officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Amnesty International said Singapore’s use of the death penalty was “a flagrant violation of human rights”.

“We call on the Singaporean authorities to stop this latest spate of executions immediately and to impose a moratorium on executions to end this shameful and inhumane punishment,” said Emerlynne Gil of the group.

Kalwant and Norasharee were convicted of heroin trafficking in the same case in 2016.

The Malaysian filed a final appeal on Wednesday, with his lawyers arguing he provided information that would have helped authorities arrest a key suspected drug dealer.

However, a three-judge panel dismissed the appeal, saying drug police officers did not use any of the information he provided to arrest the suspect.

After a hiatus of over two years, Singapore resumed executions in March with the hanging of a Singaporean drug trafficker, and activists fear more executions will be carried out in the coming months.

In a recent BBC interview, Home and Justice Minister K Shanmugam defended Singapore’s position on the death penalty, saying there was “clear evidence that it constitutes a serious deterrent to potential drug traffickers”.

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