Monday, October 10, 2022

10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty


Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 78 still permit routine capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that.

This year's theme is the link between the death penalty and torture. Quite apart from the use of torture to extract "confessions" in some death penalty states, methods of execution, death-row living conditions, and the suffering from anticipating execution can often constitute torture or other cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment or punishment. Eliminating the death penalty will help eliminate these forms of torture.

The good news is that we are slowly winning. Three countries have abolished the death penalty in the past year: the Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, and Papua New Guinea. Malaysia has also agreed to abolish its mandatory death penalty, which is important progress. But there's still 78 countries to go, plus the seven who retain the death penalty in wartime - and that's a lot of work to do.