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November 13 2010 | BELARUS

Belarus

President Lukashenko does not exclude the adoption of life prison in the place of death penalty. "We will suggest to the courts that they do not emit death sentences"

 
versione stampabile

BelTA

Death penalty may be replaced with life imprisonment in Belarus

MINSK, 12 November – Death penalty in Belarus can be completely replaced with life imprisonment, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko said in an interview to German mass media.

The head of state explained why death penalty in Belarus cannot be abolished completely. “From your point of view, we made a very grave democratic mistake having put this issue to referendum. The decisions adopted by referendum are above the constitution in Belarus. Therefore, to solve this problem, we need to hold a referendum on the abolition of that decision,” the President said.

At the same time the public opinion on this issue has not changed since then, on the contrary, even hardened, Alexander Lukashenko said. Therefore, the country is now running a series of activities, public hearings “to try to turn people to these European values.”

“Frankly, we have not succeeded much. We could not shake and change the public opinion,” the President noted.

Belarus applies both death penalty and life imprisonment, Alexander Lukashenko reminded. According to him, 15 years ago from 30 to 40 people were sentenced to death a year, now these are 2 to 4 people. “We mainly apply life imprisonment, well, if this is not some grave crime against humanity,” the head of state said.

“Most likely, this is how we will move. We will apply life imprisonment as an alternative to capital punishment. Therefore, we will formulate such a policy so that courts would not apply that cruel punishment,” the President resumed.

 

 

 

KNA

Weißrussland plant Moratorium für Todesstrafe

Minsk Weißrusslands Staatspräsident Alexander Lukaschenko hat  sich erstmals für ein Moratorium bei der Todesstrafe ausgesprochen.

Gerichte sollten diese «grausame Strafe» nicht mehr verhängen, sagte  er nach Angaben der staatlichen weißrussischen Nachrichtenagentur  Belta vom Freitag. «Aller Wahrscheinlichkeit nach werden wir die  Todesstrafe durch lebenslange Haft ersetzen», wird Lukaschenko  zitiert. Eine endgültige Abschaffung dieser Strafform sei nur durch  eine Volksabstimmung möglich, heißt es weiter. Die Mehrheit der  Weißrussen sei allerdings weiterhin für die Strafe und müsse noch  für die Abschaffung gewonnen werden, so der Präsident.

Lukaschenko betonte, in Weißrussland werde die Todesstrafe bereits  deutlich seltener verhängt als in der Vergangenheit. Pro Jahr gebe  es noch zwei bis vier Todesurteile, früher seien es bis zu 40  gewesen. Nach Angaben weißrussischer Menschenrechtsorganisationen  sitzen derzeit drei zum Tode verurteilte Männer ein. Laut ihren  Schätzungen wurden seit der staatlichen Unabhängigkeit des Landes  1991 bis zu 400 Menschen hingerichtet. Die Tötung erfolgt durch

einen Schuss in den Hinterkopf. Angehörige werden erst im Nachhinein  informiert und erhalten weder den Leichnam, noch wird ihnen der Ort  der Bestattung genannt.

 Weißrussland ist das einzige Land Europas, in dem noch Menschen  hingerichtet werden - zuletzt im März. Kanzleramtschef Ronald  Pofalla (CDU) hatte in der vergangenen Woche bei einem Besuch in  Weißrussland die Abschaffung der Todesstrafe zur Bedingung für  engere Kontakte Minsks zur EU gemacht. 1996 hatte bei einem  Volksentscheid eine Mehrheit von 80 Prozent der Wähler die  Abschaffung der Todesstrafe abgelehnt. Auf Druck des Europarats und der EU setzte das weißrussische Parlament Anfang dieses Jahres eine  Arbeitsgruppe ein, die seit Februar ein Moratorium für Hinrichtungen  prüft.

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