16:39 21 February 2013
The Japanese Justice Ministry has confirmed it has executed three inmates on Thursday, 21st February, 2013. The hanging of the three men comes as the first set of individuals to be put to death in the country since September 2012.
The Justice Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki told reporters: “I ordered the executions after giving careful consideration to the matter."
He added: "These were extremely cruel cases in which victims were deprived of their precious lives for very selfish reasons."
The men have been named as Kaoru Kobayashi, Keiki Muto and Masahiro Kanagawa. It is believed that Kobayashi was hanged for offenses which involved a seven-year-old girl.
The hangings mark the first executions to be carried out under Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a Liberal Democrat who came to power late December last year.
The Amnesty International Japan reportedly “condemns” the hangings. A statement from them read: "The Japanese government cannot be excused from abiding by international human rights standards, just by citing opinion among the public.”
Aside from Japan, certain states in America also have the death sentence in place. Many countries have abandoned the act of carrying out capital punishment. It is thought that around 100 countries around the world have stopped using the death penalty.
Capital punishment relates to the legal process the state pursues whereby an individual is sentenced to death as a result of a crime
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