Almost 400 death row prisoners in Vietnam have been virtually “saved” from the death penalty because of a shortage of the drug used in lethal injections. Penalties were replaced by execution by firing squad to reduce suffering, but the police has yet to execute anyone.

Deputy Police Minister Dang Van Hieu said that they are still waiting for imports of the European-made Pentobarbital, which was difficult to access after the European Union banned the sale of the drug, in opposition of the death penalty.