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Middle East

Iranian execution survivor may be spared second hanging


The Justice Minister has said it would be ill-advised to execute a convicted drug offender who has already survived a hanging.

Mostafa Pourmohammadi issued the statement after international calls to spare the man, a 37-year-old named only as Alireza M.

The man was hanged earlier this month in a prison in the north-eastern city of Bojnord. He was declared dead by a doctor after hanging from a noose for 12 minutes, but was found still alive in the morgue the next day.

Jurists are arguing over whether the law requires him to be hanged a second time. A senior judge, Nourollah Aziz-Mohammadi, said the sentence had not been carried out. But a lawyer said the sentence had been carried out and there was no need to repeat it. Amnesty International has urged Iran to halt the man’s execution – as well as all other death penalties. Iran executes more people than any other country, except China.

Mr Pourmohammadi told Irna, the state news agency: “The individual who remained alive after execution is on an oxygen device. If he remains alive, it is no longer expedient for the execution order to be carried out again.”