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These 9 African countries have the highest number of people on death row

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  • Five African countries – Egypt, Botswana, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan – carried out executions, with Botswana and Sudan resuming after not doing so in 2017.
  • A drop in recorded executions in Somalia drove an overall decrease in the region, from 28 in 2017 to 24 in 2018, despite an alarming increase in executions in South Sudan.
  • The scope of the death penalty was expanded in Mauritania and Nigeria.
  • Burkina Faso abolished the death penalty for ordinary crimes only and Gambia moved closer to abolishing the death penalty.
  • 9 African countries have the highest number of people on death row as at 2018  

Amnesty International, a non-governmental organisation that focuses on human rights, has revealed that six African nations performed execution on death row in 2018 with sub-Saharan African accounting for 90% of it.

According to its global report on “Death sentences and executions 2018,” Amnesty International said despite the decline in executions in the world in 2018, 20 countries performed at least 690 executions compared to at least 993 executions in 2017.

The figure represents the lowest number of executions that Amnesty International has recorded in the past decade. From the figures, the most executions took place in China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, VietNam and Iraq – in that order.

In Africa, Egypt, Botswana, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan – carried out executions in 2018.

The human right group said progress against the use of the death penalty in the sub-Saharan Africa region was relatively positive in 2018 as there was decrease in recorded executions from 28 in 2017 to 24 in 2018.

This infographic explains the African countries with the highest number of people on death row and executions:

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