Dec. 29, 2019

Japan executed a Chinese man, Wei Wei, who was on death row for the slaying of a family of four. He was the first foreigner to be executed by Japan’s Ministry of Justice in over a decade.


  • The global trend has largely been to move away from executions and death sentences.

  • According to Amnesty International, at least 690 executions were carried out in 20 countries in 2018, which is a decrease of over 31 per cent compared to 2017. The most executions were carried out in China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam and Iraq.

  • The methods used to execute people included beheading, electrocution, hanging, lethal injection and shooting.

  • In 2018, while Burkina Faso abolished the death penalty, Gambia and Malaysia both declared an official moratorium on executions and in the US, the death penalty statute in the state of Washington was declared unconstitutional in October 2018.

  • As of 2018, while over 106 countries abolished the death penalty in law for all crimes, roughly 142 countries abolished the death penalty in law or practice.