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March 29, 2011

Lots of data and a cool graphic concerning international use of the death penalty

Death-penalty-statistics--008 Amnesty International recently published death penalty information for all countries in the world, and the folks at The Guardian have assembled and summarized the information effectively in this piece.  The piece includes the cool graphic spotlighted here, and this text:

Despite fewer countries executing prisoners than ever before, the death penalty is still alive and well around the world.  The latest statistics show that China executes thousands, said Amnesty International in its report on the death penalty worldwide.  Amnesty does not provide a precise figure of executions in China as Beijing keeps such figures secret.

China, together with Iran, North Korea, Yemen and the US carried out the most executions last year, the report says:

  • Whilst 67 countries handed down sentences in 2010, only 23 countries actually carried out executions -- just over a third
  • The number of official executions reported fell from at least 714 people in 2009 to at least 527 in 2010, excluding China.
  • We have also seen fresh steps towards abolition in countries including Belarus and Mongolia...

Setting China aside, Amnesty said at least 527 executions were carried out last year. Almost half of those took place in Iran (252).  North Korea executed 60, Yemen 53 and the US 46. The minimum number of executions was down from at least 714 in 2009.

Methods of execution included beheading, electrocution, hanging, lethal injection and various kinds of shooting (by firing squad, and at close range to the heart or the head).  No stonings were recorded in 2010, but stoning sentences were reported in Nigeria, Pakistan and Iran, where at least 10 women and four men remain under stoning sentences.  At least 2,024 new death sentences were imposed during 2010 in 67 countries, including 365 in Pakistan alone, meaning it has some 8,000 people currently on death row.

March 29, 2011 at 08:55 AM | Permalink


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yeah i'm thinking per capita might have been more useful?

Posted by: . | Mar 29, 2011 9:07:22 AM

There are 500,000 murders a year. No cool graphics.

I want Prof. Berman to try a private experiment. He does not have disclose the result. Utter the V word.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 29, 2011 9:40:31 AM

We should be proud to be in such company. China, Iran, North Korea--aren't you proud, S.C?

Posted by: anon14 | Mar 29, 2011 4:08:06 PM

Don't forget Japan. We all know what a brutal dictatorship they have!

Posted by: MikeinCT | Mar 29, 2011 4:20:40 PM


Also Taiwan, as well as India, the world's largest democracy.

Posted by: Res ipsa | Mar 29, 2011 5:26:21 PM

Plus Indonesia and most of Africa.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Mar 29, 2011 6:31:26 PM

What i have learned from the anti DP advocates that Western European "values" are against the death penalty and that being "civilized" requires an anti DP stance. How different are such pious feelings of superiority over others is this from colonial times where the "civilized" nations imposed their laws and culture on South America, Africa and the far east?

Is it this time the "civilized" nations are right, they are superior?

Posted by: David | Mar 29, 2011 10:33:17 PM

MIke in Conn.

As far as I can determine, in 2009, Japan executed 7 persons. In 2010, Japan executed 2 person. (all executed were convicted of multiple mureers)

Res Ipsa, since 1995 Inida has executed only 1 person, Dhananjoy Chatterjee, August 2004

I rest my case.

Posted by: anon14 | Mar 30, 2011 12:28:31 AM

You rest your case on what exactly? Given their population and crime rate, Japans executed at a higher rate than the US in 2009.

And if your point was that they execute so many less than we do that they are not in our company, than the same works for your comment about the US being in the company of Iran and China. They execute at a far higher rate. We executed four times as many as Japan, China executes at least 20 times as many as we do.

Posted by: MikeinCT | Mar 30, 2011 12:38:20 AM

MikeinCT --

I don't think you get anon14's point. People in the Orient and the Subcontinent are racially different from the advanced types in Europe, and therefore, you know, are the white man's burden. How dare we join these savages in their backward views on the death penalty.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Mar 30, 2011 1:16:15 AM

The lawyer does not study critical thinking in Evidence class.

Here is a list of fallacies to peruse.


Anon 14 seeks to shame or rebut support for the DP by citing unsavory supporters. Association Fallacy.

When abolitionists say, stop the DP due to the rate of exoneration -- Nirvana fallacy: when solutions to problems are said not to be right because they are not perfect.

No math is involved. The promulgation of a fallacious rule or allowing fallacious conclusions in court will be violations of the procedural due process right of the defendant to a fair hearing. Furthermore, all fallacies violate Daubert per se because Daubert relies on scientific reasoning and experience.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 30, 2011 2:01:58 AM

Anon 14: Because Iranians, Chinese and N. Koreans eat, piss, use cars, speak, love their families, we should stop doing those to avoid being in their unsavory company.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 30, 2011 2:05:12 AM

It looks like Islam, "East Asian philosophy" and American retributionism are the dominant intellectual grounds upon which the death penalty is based. Very few executions don't fit one of those categories.

Posted by: ohwilleke | Mar 30, 2011 5:50:08 PM

"No stonings were recorded in 2010, but stoning sentences were reported in Nigeria, Pakistan and Iran, where at least 10 women and four men remain under stoning sentences."

We should use stonings here. Bill, Mike in Conn. and Supreme Court could throw the first ones. What do you say?

Posted by: anon11 | Mar 30, 2011 7:43:01 PM

What does that have to do with anyone's argument? Or are you just trying to change the subject after your argument fell apart?

Posted by: MikeinCT | Mar 30, 2011 8:57:48 PM

It is sad to think that human life is valued so little that we are reduced to comparing our statistics to Japan and saying , well, statistically, we aren't so bad. Japan is a pretty good benchmark, wonderful system of government and all. Good two party system. Nice economy.
Perhaps we should just say any and all forms of death penalties are correct? We can set the standard for the world. We don't want Nigeria, Pakistan and Iran to surpass us in anything.
Just curious, what is the number of black men on death row in the US? Then give me a count on the number of black men who comment on this blog.

Posted by: .. | Mar 30, 2011 10:48:18 PM

..: Using a simple declarative sentence, what is your point? Please, do not make racist remarks. They make you look cheap.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 31, 2011 1:01:48 AM

anon11 --

"We should use stonings here."

Not my choice, or that of any DP backer I ever talked to, but you get to speak for yourself.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Mar 31, 2011 10:37:36 AM

SC....I won't put it in the gibberish you are so fond of...
The US doesn't seem to be troubled putting black/hispanic in prison and on death row. The decision makers are rarely black/hispanic. Those who comment on this blog are in that catagory.
That is a fact.

Posted by: .. | Mar 31, 2011 2:00:58 PM

What's your point? Most Black/Hispanic killers are on death row for killing people the same color as they are. And most of death row is White anyway.

And how do you know what color people are on this site?

Posted by: MikeinCT | Mar 31, 2011 3:37:32 PM

..: The data show that it is black victims who are under-protected, and undervalued in DP cases. Kill a white, get death. Kill a black get 10 years. Most murders are by same race murderers. So there should be 3 times more blacks on death as there are now if black victims were as valued as white ones.

You should not assume anything about the readers. For example, if we were to meet, I may be a very rare, real African American, not the Southern Trash Americans of the Hood.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 31, 2011 10:07:14 PM

MikeinCT --

To ".." -- "And how do you know what color people are on this site?"

Because he has a tinfoil hat.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Apr 1, 2011 9:31:44 AM

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