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For state crimes, Nigeria hangs four

From BBC
 Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan
Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan

Four prisoners have been hanged in Southern Nigeria in what is believed to be the first executions in 7 years.

The State of Edo Justice Commissioner, Henry Idahagbon, told the BBC: “The prisoners had been convicted of armed robbery or murder.”

Amnesty International said: The executions represent a truly ‘dark day’ for human rights in Nigeria.”

“More than 1,000 prisoners in Nigeria are believed to be on death row,” Amnesty noted.

“President Goodluck Jonathan recently asked state governors to sign death warrants in an effort to reduce crime,” local media said.

Mr. Idahagbon added: “The four men were hanged at Benin City Prison, after a court had ordered their executions Monday afternoon, June 24, 2013.

“All their appeals had been exhausted and their death warrants had been signed, with two signed by Edo Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, and the others by governors of other states,” he told the BBC.

The BBC quotes Mr. Idahagbon as saying: “The executions were carried out by the prison service, a federal agency, and not the Edo State Governor.”

“It had received credible reports of four executions in Benin City,” Amnesty International also said.

The international human rights group is calling on the Nigerian authorities to “return to the moratorium on executions”.


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