Number of people put to death last year highest in 25 years, says Amnesty International

Among the most prominent country for executions is China

Number of people put to death last year highest in 25 years, says Amnesty International

Stephen Morton / AP/Press Association Images

The number of people sentenced to death last year was the highest in 25 years, according to data collected by Amnesty International.

Almost 1,650 people were sent to death in 2015, a figure which represents roughly a 50% increase on the number of executions in 2014. 

The new figures also show that China, Iran (977), Pakistan (320), Saudi Arabia (158) and the United States (28) are the top five countries who authorised executions in 2015.

China's exact number of people executed is a state secret, while America's number is their lowest since 1991.

Colm O'Gorman of Amnesty International says the news indicates that the world is adopting a more progressive attitude towards the death penalty.

"In 2015, four countries completely abolished the death penalty, so that means the majority of the world has now banned what is undoubtedly one of the most horrendous of punishments."

"The long term trend is clear, the world is moving away from the death penalty."