Iraq hangs 17 prisoners, all but 1 convicted of 'terrorism'

Iraq's Justice Ministry says it has hanged 17 convicted prisoners, all but one for "terrorism," shrugging off calls from international human rights organizations to reconsider using capital punishment.

In a statement issued Monday, the ministry said that authorities had executed 15 Iraqis and an Egyptian convicted of terrorism for "carrying out crimes against Iraqi people." The last was convicted of another unspecified criminal offense. Two of those hanged were women. It didn't say when the executions were carried out.

The hangings brought the total number of executions in Iraq this year to 67.

According to the London-based Amnesty International, Iraq was ranked fourth among the top five executioners in the world in 2011, after China, Iran, Saudi Arabia and U.S. Groups have questioned whether defendants receive a fair trial.