Update: On June 18, 2013 Kuwaiti authorities hung two Egyptian men, one had been convicted of abduction and rape, and the other had been convicted on murder charges.
(Beirut) – Local media in Kuwait are reporting that at least two prisoners, both Egyptian, will be executed on live television at 7:30 a.m. on June 18, 2013. It will be Kuwait’s second round of executions since it ended its de facto moratorium on use of the death penalty in April.
Local activists told Human Rights Watch that one of the men was convicted of murder and the other of kidnap and rape. They said that three other foreigners, two Bengali men convicted of rape and murder, a Pakistani man convicted of drug dealing, and a Kuwaiti woman convicted of arson may be facing imminent execution.
“This new round of executions indicates that Kuwait is moving in exactly the wrong direction regarding the death penalty,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “The government should cancel the executions immediately and reinstate the moratorium that had been in place since 2007.”
Human Rights Watch opposes the death penalty in all circumstances as an inherently irreversible, inhumane punishment. A majority of countries in the world have abolished the practice. On December 18, 2007, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution by a wide margin calling for a worldwide moratorium on executions.