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USA - California. 39 inmates died by COVID-19 in California’s prisons

July 19, 2020:

California’s inaction on COVID-19 amounts to a death sentence for prisoners.
In early 2019, Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order that placed a moratorium on the state’s death penalty. “Death sentences are unevenly and unfairly applied to people of color, people with mental disabilities, and people who cannot afford costly legal representation,” Newsom wrote.
“I will not oversee execution of any person while Governor.”
But in the midst of a global pandemic, incarceration has become a cruel and randomly applied death sentence. Those disproportionately incarcerated in California—people of color, people experiencing mental illness, and the poor—are put at greatest risk.
As of July 17, Newsom has already overseen the state execution of 39 people by COVID-19 in California’s prisons. (For comparison, California’s death row executed 13 people between 1978 and 2006.)
The virus shows no sign of slowing its spread through a sprawling system. More than 6,000 COVID-19 cases had been confirmed across state prisons, 20% of which have occurred in the last 2 weeks, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR). Because only limited testing has been made available, the total number of cases among those incarcerated is likely far greater.
The estimated 240,000 people imprisoned in California state prisons, jails, and detention centers were never permitted to practice physical distancing. They have had no option but to remain where they are, crowded into unsanitary cells, breathing and rebreathing shared air, waiting for the inevitable appearance of the virus.
In May, what was at the time the state’s largest prison epidemic tore through the California Institution for Men in Chino, just east of Los Angeles. Sixteen people were killed and over 900 cases were confirmed.
The state then exported the virus. On May 30, CDCR transferred nearly 200 people incarcerated at the California Institute for Men to San Quentin State Prison, in Marin County, and Corcoran State Prison, in Kings County, south of Fresno.
Now, the pandemic is devastating the state’s oldest prison. More than 1100 people are currently sick in San Quentin. Twelve have died thus far. The case notification rate inside is 125 times the rate across California.
The close collaboration between CDCR and Immigration and Custom’s Enforcement (ICE) fuels the epidemic within the state’s immigration detention centers, too. At the Adelanto Detention Center, privately owned by the infamous GEO group in San Bernardino County, 6 of the 10 COVID-19 cases reported earlier this month were among people who had been transferred there from state and federal prisons with ongoing outbreaks.
Outside prisons, jails, and detention centers, epidemiologists and healthcare workers are struggling to break transmission chains and prevent the continued spread of SARS-CoV-2.
The COVID-19 deaths in California’s penitentiary system, though, are preventable. California incarcerates far more people per capita than most countries in the world. This was not always the case and is a trend that can be reversed.
For months, activists inside and outside have continuously called on Governor Newsom to dramatically reduce California prison populations. And state assembly members are finally calling on him to end transfers from state prisons to ICE.
But releases so far have been too little and too late. The state’s prison system—6 months into a global pandemic—still operates at 118% of its capacity, conditions ripe for virus spread. On July 10, CDCR announced it would grant early releases to 8,000 people incarcerated in the prisons hardest hit by COVID-19. Yet such releases represent less than 5% of the state’s prison population, far below the reductions recommended by Amend, a group of health advisors for the prison system, and CDCR’s requirements for release would categorically exclude many people.
Such shallow gestures cannot slow a pandemic virus. Governor Newsom and CDCR must begin unprecedented mass releases to protect those who still can be protected and to end this cruel new death penalty.
Brutally late action is better than none at all.

https://www.sfexaminer.com/opinion/californias-inaction-on-covid-19-amounts-to-a-death-sentence-for-prisoners/

(Source: San Francisco Examiner, 19/07/2020)

KUWAIT: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDERING PREGNANT SAUDI WIFE
BAHRAIN: CRITICISM OVER DEATH SENTENCES REJECTED
MALAYSIA: NOT ALL 6 CONVICTED OF MURDERING DPP DESERVE DEATH SENTENCE, SAYS NGO
IRAN: MAHMOUD MOUSAVI MAJD EXECUTED ON ESPIONAGE CHARGES
CHINA: ‘MENTALLY ILL' FATHER EXECUTED FOR MURDERING HIS DAUGHTER'S NINE-YEAR-OLD CLASSMATE 
TAIWAN: NEW EXECUTION GUIDELINES SLAMMED BY RIGHTS GROUPS
IRAN - In what has been perceived as a victory for the social media campaign Supreme Court reconsiders death sentences for Saeed Tamjidi, Mohammad Rajabi and Amirhossein Moradi
USA - Dustin Honken, 52, White, was executed at Terre Haute federal prison.
USA: THE FEDERAL EXECUTION OF WESLEY IRA PURKEY HAS BEEN ACCOMPLISHED
USA - Wesley Purkey Execution Temporarily Halted
SUDAN: DEATH PENALTY REMOVED FOR GAY SEX, APOSTASY
USA - The federal execution of Wesley Ira Purkey has been accomplished
IRAN: MAN EXECUTED FOR SELLING MISSILE INFORMATION TO CIA
LIBERIA: ARMED FORCES CHIEF OF STAFF WANTS DEATH PENALTY FOR RAPISTS
CHAD: DEATH PENALTY COMPLETELY ABOLISHED
IRAN: TWO KURDISH POLITICAL PRISONERS EXECUTED IN URMIA
USA: DANIEL LEWIS LEE WAS EXECUTED AT THE U.S. PENITENTIARY IN TERRE HAUTE, INDIANA
IRAN: PRISONER EXECUTED IN KERMANSHAH CENTRAL PRISON FOR MURDER
TAIWAN: NEW LAW REQUIRES PRISONERS BEING EXECUTED TO WEAR HOOD
DEATH PENALTY: HANDS OFF CAIN, TRUMP RETURNS AMERICA TO THE PAST
BAHRAIN: TOP COURT UPHOLDS DEATH SENTENCES AGAINST TWO ACTIVISTS
USA - U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan (District of Columbia) again halted federal executions
IRAN: UNIDENTIFIED PRISONER EXECUTED IN MASHHAD CENTRAL PRISON FOR DRINKING ALCOHOL
USA - The 7th US Circuit Court of Appeal overturned the decision to suspend the execution of Daniel Lewis Lee.
SUDAN SCRAPS APOSTASY LAW AND ALCOHOL BAN FOR NON-MUSLIMS
MALAYSIA: SIX SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDERING PROSECUTOR
USA - European Union. EU condemns U.S. for resuming federal executions.
USA - Federal Jane E. Magnus-Stinson Orders Delay of federal execution of Daniel Lewis Lee.
NIGERIA: 37-YEAR-OLD SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR BEHEADING MAN FOR RITUAL
INDONESIA: SOME 100 DRUG OFFENDERS SENTENCED TO DEATH THIS YEAR

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IRAN - Hands off Cain Year End Report: At least 284 executions in 2020
  IRAN: HANDS OFF CAIN, THE HANGING OF THE PROTESTER MOSTAFA SALEHI IS A SHAME FOR THE SO-CALLED DEMOCRATIC WORLD   
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