U.S. Report

NEW YORK (JTA) — A U.S. Jewish group is calling for a moratorium on the death penalty in light of the first two federal executions since 1963.

The chairman of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, Leonard Cole, said the death penalty, which is currently legal in 38 states as well as at the federal level, is "incompatible with the traditional Jewish regard for the sanctity of life."

Last week, Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber, was executed; on Tuesday, Juan Raul Garza, who committed a drug-related murder and ordered two other people killed, was put to death.