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Capital punishment had been in use in Poland since 1818 and was stopped in 1997.
The commonly used methods of execution were beheading by sword, hanging and firing squad. From 1818 to 1867, beheading and hanging were the methods of execution, with hanging used only for male prisoners. From 1918-1927, a firing squad was the only method. From 1927 onwards, hanging was the preferred method, although the firing squad was reserved for soldiers and people who committed crimes against the nation. Between 1944 and 1956, the preferred method of execution was a single bullet to the back of the head.
The last execution took place in 1988. After 1989, death sentences were awarded but not carried out. In 1997, Poland ratified the European Convention on Human Rights. Currently the death penalty has been totally abolished in Poland.
One of the most notable executions was that of Eligiusz Niewiadomski in 1923 for assassinating the president, Gabriel Narutowicz.
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