Obama Chides Russia on “Brute Force,” Rejects Iraq War Criticism
Obama’s comments come as Ukraine has secured a massive bailout from the IMF. The Ukrainian government will receive up to $18 billion in credits and aid in return for accepting austerity measures rejected by the ousted former President Viktor Yanukovych.
Philippines, Muslim Rebels Sign Landmark Peace Deal
Egyptian General Resigns to Clear Run for Presidency
Study: Executions Rose Worldwide in 2013
A new study says capital punishment is on the rise across the globe. Audrey Gaughran of Amnesty International blamed Iran and Iraq for an increase of over 100 executions over the previous year.
Audrey Gaughran: “Almost a hundred more people were put to death in 2013 compared to 2012. The countries responsible for that sharp spike are largely Iran and Iraq. Four countries also resumed executions during 2013, which was quite troubling. But that said, the overall picture, the long-term picture, in terms of abolition of the death penalty is positive, and if we look back over 10, 20 years, we see a steady decline in the use of the death penalty.”
The United States was fifth on the list of executing countries, with 39 killings in 2013.
Oklahoma Judge Strikes Down Secrecy on Execution Drugs
An Oklahoma judge has struck down a law that hides information on the drugs used in lethal injections. Two death row prisoners had sued the state to disclose the source of the drugs to be used in their executions. On Wednesday, District Court Judge Patricia Parrish ruled Oklahoma has violated the Constitution by failing to disclose the name of the drug supplier, the combination of chemicals and the dosages used in executions. The ruling could delay executions in other states where prisoners are challenging similar laws.
Northwestern University Football Players Win Right to Unionize
Bank of America in $9.3B Settlement for Selling Toxic Bonds; Ex-CEOFaces 3-Year Ban
Bin Laden Son-in-Law Convicted in Terrorism Trial
The son-in-law of Osama bin Laden has been convicted on charges of conspiring to kill Americans. Sulaiman Abu Ghaith is the most senior al-Qaeda member to be tried in a U.S. civilian court in the years since 9/11. During testimony, he described meeting with bin Laden inside a cave in Afghanistan just hours after the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, but denied having prior knowledge. Ghaith’s court-appointed lawyer said his appearance in videos threatening the U.S. doesn’t prove his involvement in actual plots.
Stanley Cohen: “It’s not about words; it’s not about association. There are clear requirements under the law. You know, if you want to turn around and indict people for words, there’s about 270 congressmen and women right now that have said some pretty incendiary things about a lot of things; maybe we should start there.”
During the trial, the court rejected testimony from alleged 9/11 plotter Khalid Sheikh Mohammed that Abu Ghaith had no role in al-Qaeda’s violent operations. He faces a sentence of up to life in prison.