Death row executions return to Japan as three people are executed

Death row executions
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Death row executions return to Japan as three people are executed in a single day.

Japan has carried out executions for the first time since December 2019. On Tuesday, December 21, three death row inmates were executed.

A justice ministry official commented: “Three death row inmates were executed today.”


The men had been convicted of atrocious crimes. One of the people put to death had killed seven family members and neighbours in a terrifying knife and hammer attack in 2004. The other men who were executed had carried out a double murder in 2003.

Japan last carried out executions in 2019 when three executions were performed. In 2018 a staggering 15 executions were carried out. The 2018 executions saw 13 members of a sect involved in a Tokyo sarin gas attack put to death.

The Deputy Secretary-General of the Government Seiji Kihara commented: “Whether or not to retain the death penalty is a crucial issue that concerns the foundations of Japan’s criminal justice system.”

He went on to add: “As atrocious crimes continue to be committed, the death penalty must be imposed on those who have perpetrated acts of such gravity and atrocity that it is unavoidable.”

Despite criticism from human rights organisations backing for capital punishment is strong in the country. At the moment over 100 people are said to be on death row in Japan.

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Alex Glenn is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News. Formerly she worked in the NHS for 15 years until relocating to Spain in 2018. She loves the Spanish lifestyle, language and culture and spent several years learning Spanish before moving to Spain for a better quality of life. She has made her home in the mountains in Almeria, where she loves being part of a rural community that has a mix of both expats and Spanish residents. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, reading and exploring the area where she lives.


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