Vietnam changes law to get round EU execution ban

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Associated Press

Posted on May 15, 2013 at 5:02 AM

Updated Wednesday, May 15 at 5:33 AM

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Vietnam has issued a new law allowing domestically produced chemicals to be used to execute prisoners.

The European Union has stopped exporting chemicals used in lethal injections because it regards the death penalty as a human rights violation. The ban has left Vietnam unable to execute a prisoner since November 2011, when the country decided to switch from firing squads to lethal injections.

Vietnam's old law governing executions stipulated the names of the three chemicals produced in the EU that had to be used in lethal injection. The new law issued this week doesn't mention the chemicals by name, meaning they can be produced locally.

The law will take effect on June 27.

There are believed to be more than 530 Vietnamese currently on death row.

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