Moving Away from the Death Penalty

Arguments, Trends and Perspectives

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Capital punishment is irrevocable. It prohibits the correction of mistakes by the justice system and leaves no room for human error, with the gravest of consequences. There is no evidence of a deterrent effect of the death penalty. Those sacrificed on the altar of retributive justice are almost always the most vulnerable. This book covers a wide range of topics, from the discriminatory application of the death penalty, wrongful convictions, proven lack of deterrence effect, to legality of the capital punishment under international law and the morality of taking of human life.




Today, more than four out of five countries have either abolished the death penalty or do not practice it. Globally, there is a firm trend towards abolition, with progress in all regions of the world. Member States representing a variety of legal systems, traditions, cultures and religious backgrounds have taken a position in favour of abolition of the death penalty. Some States that opposed the abolition of the death penalty in the recent past have moved to abolish it; others have imposed a moratorium on its use. The application of the death penalty appears to be confined to an ever-narrowing minority of countries.


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