People's Republic of China: At least 1000 people executed in "strike hard" campaign against crime
At least a thousand people have been executed in China since the launch of a nationwide anti-crime campaign on 28 April 1996. It is clear from many reports by the state media that the "strike hard" campaign is being conducted according to specific instructions given by the central government and Communist Party authorities. There is grave concern that as a result of such instructions many of those executed have been convicted after summary trials, and that the pressure put upon the police and the judiciary to "crack" cases and speed up prosecutions may result in increased use of torture to force confessions. Amnesty International is calling on the authorities to call an immediate halt to further executions.