Death penalty to be abolished

Remigio Civitarese
Ottobre 11, 2018

"This is a positive move for Malaysia, as we are hoping more countries, particularly in South East Asia, to eventually demolish the execution practices", Usman Hamid, Director of Amnesty International Indonesia, told the ABC.

The Malaysian government has made a decision to abolish the death penalty and a proposed Bill is expected to be tabled at the next parliament sitting, local media reported on Wednesday (Oct 10).

The moratorium on the death penalty would save, among others, two women accused of assassinating the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un previous year.

The African Christian Democratic Party has promoted capital punishment as part of its policy.

"Prisoners under sentence of death must be treated with humanity and dignity and held in conditions that meet worldwide human rights law and standards", the organisation said in a statement on Wednesday, which is World Day Against the Death Penalty.

And contrary to popular belief, the abolition of the death penalty does not lead to an increase in crime.

"We are studying certain issues... we need to look into it and hear the views of all, but as it stands today, the decision is to abolish the death penalty". Its promises included eradicating corruption and bolstering human rights.

Death penalty is exclusively carried out by hanging in Malaysia.

Capital punishment in Malaysia is now mandatory for murder, kidnapping, possession of firearms and drug trafficking, among other crimes.

Between 2007 and 2017, 35 individuals faced the gallows.

"We strongly welcome the announcement by the Malaysian Government of its intention to abolish the death penalty", Dag Juhlin-Dannfelt, the Swedish ambassador to Malaysia, wrote on Twitter. A total of 1,267 prisoners are on death row, making up 2.7 per cent of the 60,000 behind bars.

The organisation said that it strongly opposed the death penalty, irrespective of the crime committed, as it was a violation of human rights.

Amnesty International reported in March that 799 people on death row were convicted of drug trafficking, including 416 foreign nationals.

Once the death penalty is scrapped, Malaysia will have the moral authority to fight for the lives of Malaysians facing death sentences overseas, he added.

The UN envoy noted the majority of executions today are carried out in China, Pakistan, Iraq, Iran and Saudi Arabia.

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