A resolution calling for a global moratorium on executions will be introduced at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) 62nd session which begins on 18 September 2007. The adoption of such a resolution by the UN’s principal organ would be an important milestone towards the abolition of the death penalty.
The High Commissioner for Human Rights, Louise Arbour called the death penalty „… a sanction that should have no place in any society that claims to value human rights and the inviolability of the person“. She recently praised Rwanda’s decision to abolish the death penalty as demonstrating leadership by action especially noting this is a country that „has suffered the ultimate crime and whose people’s thirst for justice is still far from quenched“.
The death penalty legitimizes an irreversible act of violence by the state. The death penalty is discriminatory and is often used disproportionately against the poor, minorities and members of racial, ethnic and religious communities. The death penalty is often imposed after a grossly unfair trail. But even when trials respect international standards of fairness, the risk of executing the innocent can never be fully eliminated: the death penalty will inevitably claim innocent victims, as has been persistently demonstrated.
Global moraotrium on executions now
AI Index: IOR 41/018/2007 (Public)
22 August 2007