NAGOYA — A citizens’ group against capital punishment held a protest Sunday night at the Nagoya Detention House — the place where two death row inmates were hanged Thursday.

The two were part of a trio, the other was hanged in Hiroshima, who received the distinction of having their deaths publicly announced by the Justice Ministry immediately after execution, the first such statement to be made in several years.

In front of the detention house, about 10 or so members of the Nagoya citizens’ group displayed a banner calling for the abolition of capital punishment.

Reading a statement out loud to protest the three executions, group members also used a megaphone to contact the six other death row inmates in the facility who are awaiting their final days, which are known to come without any notice whatsoever.

“Two people have been hanged here, although you guys, the other death row inmates, may not know,” the members said. “Discussion of the death penalty is growing in the Diet and in society … we will continue to work until the system is abolished.”

Members of the group say they are not trying to gain freedom for the inmates, but instead seek to have the system reevaluated so that serious criminals can receive correctional education while serving their terms.

Although the Justice Ministry did not release the names of the three executed inmates, informed sources tentatively identified them as Masamichi Ida, 56, Tatsuaki Nishio, 61, and Akira Tsuda, 59.

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