Twenty-six people have been executed this year, the first executions since 1989. Over 300 death sentences and thousands of heavy prison sentences have been imposed by special courts between February and October 1993. These special courts were established in Algiers, Oran and Constantine under new anti-terrorist legislation introduced on 30 September 1992. Trials in the special courts are unfair at every stage of the proceedings and violate the most fundamental requirements of international law. Confessions extracted under torture and denied by the accused in court are routinely used as evidence, and detainees are not allowed to fully exercise their right to defence and appeal.
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