Amnesty International reveal global spike in executions in death penalty report EXECUTIONS across the globe have skyrocketed with nearly 800 people killed last year, and China, Iran and Iraq leading the death penalty charge. New figures released today by human rights group Amnesty International reveal that the two Middle Eastern states executed 538 people last year alone. According to Amnestyâ€™s Death Sentences and Executions 2013 report, at least 778 executions were known to have been carried out in 2013, compared to 682 in 2012, representing a spike of 15 per cent. But this figure fails to take into account Chinaâ€™s execution numbers, which are notoriously kept secret. Amnesty Internationalâ€™s Secretary-general Salil Shetty condemned the spike and said it showed some countries were bucking the trend against abolishing the death penalty. â€œThe virtual killing sprees we saw in countries like Iran and Iraq were shameful,â€ he said. â€œBut those states who cling to the death penalty are on the wrong side of history and are, in fact, growing more and more isolated. â€œOnly a small number of countries carried out the vast majority of these senseless state-sponsored killings. They canâ€™t undo the overall progress already made towards abolition.â€ The number of executions in Iran (at least 369) and Iraq (169) saw the two countries take second and third place in the death penalty league table. According to Amnesty estimates, China tops the list with thousands reportedly put to death every year. Saudi Arabia (79) and the USA (39) come in fourth and fifth, while war-torn Somalia (34) comes in at number six. Part of the global increase could also be attributed to Indonesia, Kuwait, Nigeria and Vietnam all returning to the death penalty, however Gambia, the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan did not carry out any executions in 2013. Indonesia carried out its first executions in four years in November. Five people were put to death in 2013, and Vietnam put seven people to death by firing squad after an 18-month hiatus. Belarus also did not carry out any executions last year which meant Europe and Central Asia was execution-free for the first time since 2009. Amnesty, which is calling for global abolition of executions, said the punishment remained shrouded in secrecy in many countries with little information made public. In some cases family members, lawyers or the public are not even told the executions are taking place while countries such as Japan donâ€™t inform inmates when they will die. Globally, those put to death in 2013 were executed by beheading, electrocution, firing squad, hanging and lethal injection. Countries including Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Somalia even carried out executions in public. Inmates were executed for a range of crimes ranging from robbery, drug-related and economic offences, to adultery, blasphemy and even so-called political crimes, the report claims. The report comes just three days after Egypt sentenced to death 529 supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi on charges of murdering a policeman and attacking police. The supporters were convicted after only two sessions in one of the largest mass trials in the country in decades. Human rights lawyers said the verdicts are subject to appeal and will likely be overturned. Here are the countries and regions which still carry out executions. Middle East and North Africa Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia accounted for at least 80 per cent of executions worldwide excluding China. Iraq saw a jump in executions for the third consecutive year. At least 169 people were put to death, an increase of almost one-third compared to 2012. In Iran, there were at least 369 executions officially acknowledged by the authorities in 2013. Saudi Arabia continued executing at the same high levels as the previous two years (at least 79 in 2013). Africa In Sub-Saharan Africa, only five countries carried out executions in 2013 â€” Botswana, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan. Nigeria, Somalia and Sudan together carried out more than 90 per cent of the regionâ€™s executions. Reported executions in Somalia jumped from six in 2012 to at least 34 last year. In Nigeria, four men were hanged in the first executions in seven years. The Americas The USA was once again the only country to carry out executions in the Americas, although 39 were put to death in 2013 compared with 43 in 2012. The state of Texas accounted for 41 per cent of all executions. Former drug addict Kimberly McCarthy was condemned to death for the savage murder of 71-year-old retired college professor Dorothy Booth in 1997. She was executed in Texas in June last year Asia Vietnam and Indonesia both resumed executions last year. Indonesia used the death penalty for the first time in four years â€” five men were put to death in 2013, including two executed for drug trafficking. China continued to execute more people than the rest of the world put together. Europe and Central Asia For the first time since 2009, Europe and Central Asia was an execution-free zone. Amnesty International reveal global spike in executions in death penalty report | News.com.au ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ It sure is nice to find that Amnesty International is doing such a wonderful job. Do they also have statistics as to how many murder people all over the world and how many terrorists kill innocents and are not brought to justice? If not, then this is just a bleeding heart wail!