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European Commission welcomes Central Asian decision to limit death penalty
The European Commission welcomed a decision by Central Asian countries to limit the use of the death penalty in a press release on Oct. 10, European and World Day against the Death Penalty.
DUSHANBE — The European Commission (EC) welcomed a decision by Central Asian countries to limit the use of the death penalty, in a press release on Oct. 10, European and World Day against the Death Penalty.
“Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan have completely abolished the death penalty. Kazakhstan only imposes it for certain types of crimes and Tajikistan has introduced a moratorium on capital punishment,” the document stated. The EC added that it hopes this policy will be extended, with a view to the complete abolition of the death penalty in all five former Soviet republics in Central Asia.
To date, 94 governments around the world, including the member states of the E.U., have abolished the death penalty. Another 45 countries enforce the death penalty only in exceptional cases.
Capital punishment is still used in 58 other countries, however. In 2008, 2,390 prisoners were executed, while 8,864 were sentenced to death.
“The E.U. firmly supports universal abolition of the death penalty, since it runs counter to the very notion of human rights. Use of the death penalty does not reduce crime or ensure justice, makes miscarriages of justice irreparable and often leads to cruel and degrading treatment of prisoners who have been sentenced to death,” an E.U. document stated.
Tajikistan has no plans to repeal the moratorium on the death penalty introduced in 2004, the president of the Supreme Court of Tajikistan, Nusratullo Abdulloyev, announced on Oct. 9. “I think one of the biggest achievements in the field of human and civil rights and freedoms since Tajikistan gained independence is the abolition of the death penalty at the legislative level,” Abdulloyev said.
Tajikistan has replaced capital punishment with another harsh form of punishment, life imprisonment. “Nine life sentences have been handed down in this country so far this year,” he stated.