Arkansas court gives OK to execute inmates, upholds secrecy

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Arkansas Supreme Court says the state can execute eight death row inmates using its three-drug protocol.

The court issued its ruling Thursday. The inmates had argued that Arkansas’ execution secrecy law could lead to cruel and unusual punishment and that the state has reneged on a pledge to share information.

Attorneys for the state said at least five other courts had ruled that the three drugs used in Arkansas’ protocol are acceptable including the sedative midazolam. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld Oklahoma’s use of midazolam last year.

One of the state’s execution drugs will expire June 30, and the seller has said it will not provide more.