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January 2 2011 | UNITED STATES


A New York Times' editorial: good news in 2010 towards abolition of death penalty

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The New York Times

Still Cruel, Less Usual

The tide continued ebbing on the death penalty this year. States are putting fewer people to death, and juries continue to favor the punishment of life without parole over execution when given the choice. A report released this month by the Death Penalty Information Center counted 46 executions in 2010. That is nearly 12 percent fewer than a year ago, and down sharply from the 85 executions of 2000.
Forty-six state-committed killings are 46 too many, but the drop was even felt in Texas, by far the national leader in executions. It killed 17 prisoners this year, 29 percent fewer than last year. The center, which opposes the death penalty, found that while juries imposed about the same number of death sentences this year as last — 114 in 2010, 112 in 2009 — that rate was still only about half what it was in the 1990s.
The center suggested a number of reasons for the decline, including that prosecutors and the public are grappling with the wrenching problem of innocence. The irreversible punishment of death requires a foolproof justice system, but growing numbers of DNA exonerations in recent years suggest that it is far from that.
What tempers the results is that some of the reluctance had nothing to do with enlightenment. Death rows and executions are expensive, and cash-strapped states seem more willing to investigate alternatives. And executions were postponed or canceled this year in Arkansas, California, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Kentucky simply because of a shortage of a lethal-injection drug.
Still there was good news in 2010. Electoral victories by candidates who oppose the death penalty, like the new governors of California and New York and the re-elected governor of Massachusetts, suggest that it’s not a voters’ litmus test or political third rail.
A judge in a state court in Texas, of all places, granted a hearing this month on whether the state’s capital-punishment law is unconstitutional because of the high risk of executing the innocent. While the hearing has been temporarily halted, prominent former governors, prosecutors and legislators have urged that it continue. And in an essay this month in The New York Review of Books, John Paul Stevens, the retired Supreme Court justice, argued that capital punishment was neither fair nor an effective deterrent.
We can only hope the country is closer to putting its shameful experiment in state-sponsored death behind it.

October 25 2016


October 15 2016

Human rights activist asks Pope to discuss the death penalty with Lukashenka

Andrei Paluda, coordinator of the campaign "Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus", has sent a letter to Pope Francis, asking him to touch upon the issue of capital punishment during his meeting with President Lukashenka.
October 10 2016
October 10,14th World Day Against the Death Penalty

On the 14th world day against the death penalty a conference entitled "No Justice Without Life" will be held in Japan

July 2 2016
Address and the Final Ceremony by Mario Marazziti. Nobel Peace Prize Room, City Hall. June 23rd 2016

CITIES FOR LIFE – CITIES AGAINST THE DEATH PENALTY 6th World Congress Against the Death Penalty in Oslo

by Mario Marazziti
June 25 2016

Pope Francis: “Death penalty is unacceptable”

Pope Francis addresses the authorities, the associations, the activists and the civil society gathered in Oslo on the occasion of the World Congress Against the Death Penalty through a video message.
June 21 2016
The 6th Congress Against the Death Penalty opens today in Oslo

The Community of Sant'Egidio takes part in the congress with delegations from Italy, Congo, Belgium, Spain, Germany and Indonesia

1500 attendants coming from over 80 countries. Among them, 20 ministers, 200 diplomats, members of different parliaments, scholars, lawyers, members of various associations and civil society actors
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October 24 2016
New York Times

The Death Penalty, Nearing Its End
June 4 2016
The Washington Post

Meet the red-state conservatives fighting to abolish the death penalty
May 23 2016

Malaysian death row convict loses final appeal in Singapore
May 23 2016

Vescovo filippino: È presto per giudicare il contraddittorio Duterte. No alla pena di morte
May 14 2016

Pfizer blocca i farmaci per la pena di morte negli Usa
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