LCA Endorses Resolution in Support of Death Row Inmates
7 May 2019
The Law Council has endorsed a resolution signed on 1 March 2019 by the Paris Bar Association and the International Association of Lawyers (UIA) at the closing ceremony of the 7th World Congress Against the Death Penalty.
The Resolution was endorsed by more than 50 professional lawyers associations including the Hong Kong Bar Association, Japan Federation of Bar Associations and the New Zealand Law Society.
It calls on all bar associations, whether from abolitionist or retentionist countries, to:
- Uphold respect for the minimum judicial and due process guarantees, without discrimination, for all those facing the death penalty.
- Defend respect for detention and treatment conditions for death row inmates that preserve human dignity and fundamental rights, and
- Participate in international advocacy for the drafting and adoption of additional and specific standards that can ensure better protection for death row prisoners across the world.
According to Amnesty International’s Global Report on Death Sentences and Executions 2018, the Asia-Pacific region is home to two of the world’s top five executioners – China (at least 691 executions in 2018) and Vietnam (85). Japan (15), Singapore (13) and Pakistan (14) also continued to carry out executions in 2018. Taiwan (1) and Thailand (1) both resumed executions in 2018. An unknown number of people were executed in Laos and North Korea.
In 2019, the Malaysian Government has abandoned its commitment to abolish the death penalty and the Sri Lankan Government has taken practical steps to enable it to resume executions for drug-related offences after a 43-year moratorium.
The Law Council has consistently advocated for the global abolition of the death penalty. You can access the Law Council’s long-standing policy statement on the death penalty here.