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Press briefing note on Death Penalty

Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights:  Rupert Colville
Location:      Geneva
Date:  10 October 2017
Subject:        (1) Death penalty
                       
(1) Death penalty

Today is World Day Against the Death Penalty, and we would like to take this opportunity to repeat our call for all States to ratify the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - the only universal treaty which directly aims at the abolition of the death penalty.

Last month Madagascar became the 85th State to ratify the Second Optional Protocol, and The Gambia moved a step closer by signing the treaty. Our Office sees their actions, and those of three other States - Togo, the Dominican Republic, and Sao Tome and Principe which have become State Parties since 2016 -  as progress in the abolition of the death penalty worldwide.

We hope these initiatives will inspire other States to push forward with efforts to abolish the death penalty, and we encourage all States to ratify the Second Optional Protocol and to demonstrate their commitment to the universal abolition of the death penalty.

We stand ready to continue to support all efforts in this direction. The UN Human Rights Office opposes the use of the death penalty in all circumstances.

ENDS

For more information and media requests, please contact Rupert Colville (+41 22 917 9767 / rcolville@ohchr.org) or Liz Throssell  ( +41 22 917 9466/ ethrossell@ohchr.org ) or Jeremy Laurence: + 41 22 917 9383  / jlaurence@ohchr.org

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