Paris hosts conference on capital punishement

2nd February 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Feb 1, 2007 (AFP) - Via hanging, shooting, electrocution, injections and even stoning, an average of six people are legally put to death around the world every day, according to campaigners due to attend a conference on capital punishment in Paris.

PARIS, Feb 1, 2007 (AFP) - Via hanging, shooting, electrocution, injections and even stoning, an average of six people are legally put to death around the world every day, according to campaigners due to attend a conference on capital punishment in Paris.

And of every 10 thus executed, say members of the Amnesty International human rights group, at least eight are Chinese.

Amnesty nevertheless notes that capital punishment is on the retreat practically everywhere.

In its most recent report last year, the group said that a total of 2,418 people were known to have been executed in 2005, a fall of 35 percent from the 3,797 cases recorded the previous year.

Of the total for 2005, no less than 1,770 or 82 percent of the total were executed by China alone, the London-based group says, adding that the true Chinese figures were certainly higher.

Among other major practitioners of the death penalty, Amnesty singles out Iran, with 94 known executions in 2005, Saudi Arabia with 86 and the United States with 60.

The United States remains the only major Western country to use capital punishment, although several of its states have recently suspended the practice.

The 27-member European Union outlaws capital punishment, and therefore demands that all of its member states do likewise.

According to Amnesty, only 69 of the world's 197 states and territories still use the death penalty, but many of them do so only rarely.

A total of 88 countries have abolished the practice entirely, and 11 others only apply it in exceptional cases, the group says.

A further 29 still retain the practice on their statute-books, but have not carried out any executions for at least 10 years.

Amnesty International describes capital punishment as "the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment."

"It has never been shown to deter crime more effectively than other punishments," the group says, adding that countries which abolish the practice rarely reintroduce it.

Among the more controversial methods of capital punishment, stoning is used in Iran and Afghanistan and beheading in Saudi Arabia and Iraq, Amnesty says.


Copyright AFP

Subject: French news, Capital punishement

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