Jordan hangs 15, including 10 on terrorism charges | News | DW | 04.03.2017
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Jordan hangs 15, including 10 on terrorism charges

Jordan has executed 10 men on terrorism charges and five more for other crimes, including rape. The hangings represent another step away from a former execution moratorium in the country.

The 15 men, all Jordanians, were hanged at dawn on Saturday in Swaqa Prison, south of the capital, Amman, a government spokesman told the official Petra news agency.

Mohammed Momani said 10 of the men had been convicted of terrorism charges, and five more for other crimes, including rape.

He said the terror convictions were for involvement in five different incidents, including a 2003 bombing attack on Jordan's embassy in Iraq, a 2006 shooting attack on a group of tourists at a Roman theater in the center of Amman, and the shooting in September 2016 of high-profile Christian author Nahed Hattar on the steps of a  courthouse.

Long moratorium

Jordan had imposed a moratorium on executions in 2006, with King Abdullah II saying in 2005 that his country wanted to become the first Middle Eastern country to halt executions in line with most European countries. Under the moratorium, death sentences were still handed down, but not enacted.

Jordaniens König Abdullah II. bin al-Hussein (picture-alliance/dpa/J. Szenes)

King Abdullah has introduced a number of reforms

However, public opinion blamed a rise in crime on the policy, and executions were reinstated in December 2014 with the hanging of 11 men convicted of murder. The end of the moratorium drew criticism from human rights groups.

Jordan is reputed to be a bastion of stability in an often turbulent region, and forms a part of the US-led military coalition against extremist group "Islamic State."

tj/jlw (dpa, AP, Reuters, AFP)

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