U.N. calls on Hamas to stop executions

April 16, 2010 at 4:10 PM
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GENEVA, Switzerland, April 16 (UPI) -- The U.N. Human Rights Commission called on Hamas to stop executing prisoners in Gaza.

Hamas, which has controlled the Gaza Strip since 2007, Thursday executed two Palestinians convicted for collaborating with Israel -- the first such executions in five years, BBC News reports.

"It is extremely disappointing that Hamas has now returned to the use of the death penalty," Navi Pillay, the head of the UNHRC, said in a statement. "I call on Hamas to reconsider its position and exhibit respect for the international community's firm rejection of the death penalty, to abolish its use in Gaza, and to fully uphold and promote the right to life."

She added she was "alarmed by unconfirmed reports that several more prisoners may be executed soon."

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