Abolition of death penalty in Belarus, simply a question of political will, say rapporteurs

Yves Cruchten (Luxembourg, SOC), General Rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) on the abolition of the death penalty, and Andrea Rigoni (Italy, ALDE), PACE rapporteur on the situation in Belarus, have denounced the two death sentences handed down by the Mogilev regional court in Belarus.

“We are, yet again, forced to denounce the two death sentences handed down in Belarus. It is past the time for this to end. The Parliamentary Assembly has been ceaselessly affirming its absolute opposition to capital punishment, which it regards as an act of torture and inhuman and degrading punishment, and undeniably the most serious of all human rights violations. The battle for the abolition of the death penalty is relentless and will end only when capital punishment has been eliminated once and for all from the continent, as well as from other parts of the world,” they added.

“We once again urge the Belarusian authorities to join the European family of abolitionists by first introducing, as a matter of urgency, a moratorium on executions. Nothing in the Belarusian Constitution or legislation would prevent President Lukashenko or the Parliament from taking this step. A moratorium is simply a question of political will,” they stressed.