China Executed Three Times More People Last Year Than Rest of the World Combined – Report

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China executed more people than the rest of the world combined, according to a nonprofit US-based rights group. China executed 2,400 people in 2013, three times the number executed by the 195 other countries, which executed a total of 778 people.

“China currently executes more people every year than the rest of the world combined, but it has executed far fewer people since the power of final review of death sentences was returned to the (Supreme People’s Court) in 2007,” said the nonprofit human rights foundation, Dui Hua, which seeks clemency and better treatment for at-risk detainees.

Courts in China used final review to send 39 percent of death sentences back to lower courts for additional evidence in 2013, and 10 percent of the verdicts were overturned.

Executions are treated as state secrets in China. Amnesty International, which collects information on death sentences around the world, was forced to abandon publishing statistics on death penalties in China in 2009 because of the difficulty in obtaining information from Chinese authorities.

According to Amnesty, death sentences worldwide increased in 2013–14 percent. The total death sentences in 2013 were 778. Eighty percent of those 778 were recorded in Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia. Iran executed 369 people and Iraq executed 169.

Most of the 23,392 people (excluding Chinese executions since 2009) recorded by Amnesty have been executed for offenses related to drugs.

China also uses the death penalty as punishment for drug trafficking, as well as corruption offenses.

Dui Hua estimated that the 2,400 figure was down 20 percent from the previous year, and that China would likely execute the same number of people in 2014.

The report was published in the Guangzhou-based newspaper Southern Weekly. Information for the report was based on a judicial official who had access to the annual number of executions, reportedly.

By Sid Douglas