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CALIFORNIA (USA): 39 INMATES DIED BY COVID-19 IN STATE’S PRISONS

July 22, 2020:

California’s inaction on COVID-19 amounts to a death sentence for prisoners, San Francisco Examiner denounced on July 19, 2020.
“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”.

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

USA - Ohio. 88 died of Coronavirus in Ohio prisons, and 23 Ohio death row inmates tested positive
USA - Arizona. At least 8 death row prisoners tested positive for COVID-19, 1 died (Alfonso Salazar)
USA - Federal. The 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston overturned Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's death sentence.
SOUTH SUDAN: MINOR REMOVED FROM DEATH ROW
PAKISTAN: DEATH ROW CONVICTS FREED DUE TO ‘LIFE EXPECTANCY RIGHT’
EGYPT: CRIMINAL COURT REFERS ‘BEHEIRA BRIDE’ MURDER CASE TO GRAND MUFTI TO CONSIDER DEATH SENTENCE
EGYPT: 7 EXECUTED OVER KILLING OF POLICEMAN IN 2013
NIGERIA: TWO SENTENCED TO DEATH OVER MURDER OF ENUGU LAWYER
PAKISTAN: MUSLIM ACCUSED OF INSULTING ISLAM KILLED IN COURT
IRAN - Hamed Amian executed in Yasuj Central Prison around July 29.
MALAYSIA: BANGLADESHI MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDERING FELLOW COUNTRYMAN TWO YEARS AGO
SUDAN FINDS MASS GRAVE BELIEVED TO HAVE BODIES OF OFFICERS EXECUTED BY BASHIR
VIETNAM: FIVE DEATH SENTENCES HANDED DOWN IN DRUG CASE
USA - California. 10th death row inmate (Johnny Avila) dies from COVID-19.
IRAN - Appeal for Abbas Lisani
IRAN - Judiciary Blocks Nasrin Sotoudeh’s Bank Account, Cutting Off Funds for Family.
PHILIPPINES: DUTERTE RENEWS PUSH FOR DEATH PENALTY FOR DRUG CRIMES
IRAN: PRISONER HANGED IN QAZVIN FOR MURDER
IRAN - Supreme Court upheld death sentences of five protesters arrested at demonstrations
IRAN: KAMIL GHADERI-AGHDAM EXECUTED IN NAGHDEH PRISON FOR MURDER
MALAYSIA: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDER OF PEPPER BUSINESSMAN
NIGERIA: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH BY HANGING FOR KILLING NEWBORN BABY IN ADAMAWA
VIETNAM: TWO DRUG SMUGGLERS SENTENCED TO DEATH IN HCMC
BAHRAIN: KING URGED TO COMMUTE DEATH SENTENCES OF PRO-DEMOCRACY ACTIVISTS
EGYPT: THREE DEFENDANTS SENTENCED TO DEATH OVER ABDUCTION, RAPE OF A MINOR
NIGERIA: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR ARMED ROBBERY
IRAN: RADIO PRESENTER LASHED 74 TIMES FOR DISCLOSING INFORMATION ON CORRUPTION OF MP
IRAN: TWO PRISONERS HANGED AT ORUMIYEH CENTRAL PRISON
SUDAN: BASHIR FACES DEATH SENTENCE OVER HIS 1989 COUP
KUWAIT: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDERING PREGNANT SAUDI WIFE

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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   
  USA: ‘BLACK LIVES MATTER’, BUT IS IT ONLY RACISM?  
  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  
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