Almost 1,000 prisoners executed worldwide in 2017
Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq record highest executions, as rights group reports global decline in the use of death penalty.7 May 2018
Amnesty International has expressed concern that the death penalty continues to be applied in some Middle Eastern countries, as it reported a worldwide decline in executions and death sentences in 2017.
But for the second year in a row, the Middle Eastern countries of Iran, Saudi Arabia and Iraq were the top three for the number of executions in the world - along with Pakistan, they account for 84 percent of executions recorded worldwide.
China is widely believed to execute thousands of people every year, but data on executions "is classified as a state secret", according to Amnesty.
"Strong leaders execute justice, not people"
SALIL SHETTY, AMNESTY SECRETARY-GENERAL
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