CATHNEWS NEW ZEALAND
Vanuatujoins Papua New Guinea in considering the death penalty
A second Melanesian country is considering the death penalty as a punishment for major crimes.
Vanuatu’s Minister for Justice and Community Services, Silas Yatan, says the government may bring in the death penalty.
This follows several recent killings, including the murder of two women.
In May this year the Papua New Guinea Parliament adopted a series of amendments to provide stronger punishments for major crimes.
In particular it re-activated the death penalty. This decision prompted a number of vigorous international reactions.
Amnesty International expressed the belief that the death penalty is a “barbaric” act and would not be effective in deterring violent crimes.
Yatan did not deny the influence Papua New Guinea’s decision was having on the thinking in Vanuatu.
Unlike Papua New Guinea, the death penalty has never been part of Vanuatu’s the Criminal Code.