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CHINA: CRIMES SUBJECT TO DEATH REDUCED

August 29, 2015: China amended the country's criminal law, tightening corruption sentencing, reclassifying sex with underage prostitutes as rape and eliminating the death penalty for nine crimes, state media reported.
The standing committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) said people convicted on serious corruption charges and who were handed death sentences suspended for two years will have those converted to life in prison after the two-year period, the official Xinhua news agency said.
The change is to "safeguard judicial fairness" and prevent "the most corrupt criminals from serving shorter prison terms through commutation", Xinhua quoted the NPC as saying.
Ruan Qilin, a professor at the China University of Political Science and Law, said that the change to corruption sentencing was aimed at officials who use illegal means to have their sentences commuted or to achieve parole or non-prison sentences, the agency reported.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has launched a much-publicised drive to crack down on corruption, vowing to take on both senior as well as low-level officials.
Critics, however, say there are no safeguards against the campaign being used for political purposes and that no systemic reforms have been introduced to fight graft.
China also repealed the crime of sex with prostitutes who are underage and instead made it rape, a crime subject to harsher punishment, Xinhua said.
Previously under the law, people who had sex with prostitutes aged below 14 years old faced a maximum of 15 years in prison, according to the agency. It added that those convicted of raping a child may face the death sentence.
The NPC also approved the removal of the death penalty for nine crimes, Xinhua said.
These include smuggling of weapons, ammunition, nuclear materials and counterfeit currency; the counterfeiting of currency; fraudulently raising funds; arranging for a person or forcing a person to carry out prostitution; the obstruction of duty of a police officer; and creating rumours during wartime to mislead people.
Xinhua said that the maximum penalty for those crimes would become life in prison. (Sources: AFP, 29/08/2015)

JUBALAND (SOMALIA): FOUR PEOPLE EXECUTED ON SUSPICION OF BEING AL-SHABAAB MILITANTS
CHAD: 10 BOKO HARAM MEMBERS EXECUTED BY FIRING SQUAD
IRAN: MAN EXECUTED FOR DRUG-RELATED OFFENCES
INDIA: LAW PANEL DRAFT PAPER FAVOURS ABOLITION OF DEATH PENALTY
SOUTH KOREA: COURT CONFIRMS DEATH SENTENCE OF MAN WHO KILLED GIRLFRIEND'S PARENTS
IRAQ: EU CALLS ON KURDISTAN TO REINSTATE MORATORIUM ON DEATH PENALTY
GAZA: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR COLLABORATION WITH ISRAEL
IRAQ: 21 EXECUTION DECREES RECEIVED BY JUSTICE MINISTRY
PAKISTAN: THREE DEATH ROW PRISONERS HANGED
PAKISTAN: SIX MORE DEATH ROW CONVICTS HANGED
SUDAN: COURT CLEARS SOUTH SUDAN PASTORS OF SPYING
SAUDI ARABIA: ETHIOPIANS, PAKISTANI, SAUDI EXECUTED
INDONESIA: 12 CITIZENS RELEASED FROM DEATH ROW IN SAUDI ARABIA
IRAN: FOUR PRISONERS HANGED FOR DRUG OFFENCES
PAKISTAN: SHAFQAT HUSSAIN HANGED IN KARACHI CENTRAL JAIL
IRAN: 20 MORE PRISONERS HANGED
BANGLADESH: SUPREME COURT COMMUTES DEATH PENALTY OF CHILD RAPIST
SAUDI ARABIA: FIVE PRISONERS BEHEADED FOR MURDER, DRUG TRAFFICKING
IRAN: 7 EXECUTED OVER DRUG, MURDER CHARGES
IRAN: MAN SENTENCED TO HAVE EYES GOUGED OUT
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IRAN. HANDS OFF CAIN, REDUCTION OF DRUG EXECUTIONS BUT NUMBERS REMAIN WORRISOME
  HUMAN RIGHTS: DEMONSTRATION OF THE RADICAL PARTY BEFORE IRANIAN EMBASSY 14 FEBRUARY  
  BELARUS EXECUTES TWO CONVICTED MURDERERS  
  MALAYSIA: GOVT HALTS EXECUTION OF 1,200 DEATH ROW INMATES  
  JAPAN HANGS CULT LEADER SHOKO ASAHARA, 6 OTHERS FOR 1995 TOKYO SUBWAY SARIN ATTACK  
  SOMALIA - DEATH PENALTY AND TERRORISM  
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