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UN Moratorium on Death Penalty

December 7th, 2007

A committee of the United Nations General Assembly voted to back a resolution calling for a global moratorium on executions with a view to eventually abolishing the death penalty entirely. The resolution passed by a vote of 99-52, with 33 abstentions. It states “…that there is no conclusive evidence of the death penalty’s deterrent value and that any miscarriage or failure of justice in the death penalty’s implementation is irreversible and irreparable.”

The resolution calls on countries to restrict the use of the death penalty and reduce the number of offenses for which it may be imposed. It also establishes a moratorium on executions with a view to abolishing the death penalty. States which have abolished the death penalty are asked not to reintroduce it.

The resolution must still be submitted to the 192-member general assembly for a vote. If approved, it would be non-binding, but would carry moral weight. The United States and China joined many developing countries, notably from the Islamic world, in voting against the resolution.

More information:

People of Faith against the Death Penalty
Catholics against Capital Punishment

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