INTERNATIONAL NEWS: Public executions used as PR tactic

BANGKOK, THAILAND: The Thai government began a hard-hitting media

relations campaign last month to stymie the country's growing drug

problem, summoning journalists to watch the executions of five men, four

of whom were drug traffickers.



The executions took place a week after the government burned three tons

of narcotics in a public ceremony.



The crackdown is supported by Thailand prime minister Thaksin

Shinawatra, who believes public executions will deter potential

criminals.



But Amnesty International claims the death penalty is no more effective

in reducing crime than other types of punishment.



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