PACE rapporteurs strongly condemn death sentences issued in Jordan

Titus Corlatean (Romania, SOC), General Rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) on the abolition of the death penalty, and Mogens Jensen (Denmark, SOC), rapporteur on the evaluation of the partnership for democracy with the Parliament of Jordan, have strongly condemned the death sentences recently issued in Jordan.

“We strongly condemn all forms of capital punishment and call on the Jordanian authorities not to implement any death sentence and to abolish the capital punishment set out in the Criminal Code,” the rapporteurs said. “Although Jordan’s contribution to the global coalition against Daesh is internationally appreciated, the death penalty is not an acceptable weapon in the fight against terrorism.”

“We once again urge the Jordanian Parliament to intervene with the authorities to stop executions and reinstate the moratorium pending the abolition of the death penalty in the Criminal Code, in line with the expectations indicated by the Assembly upon granting ‘Partner for democracy’ status and the latest evaluation of that status with the Parliament of Jordan in October 2017.”

Mr Jensen strongly reiterated this message during his most recent visit to Amman, on 27-28 November 2018, when he met the Prime Minister, the Speakers of the House of Representatives and the Senate, the Interior and Justice Ministers, the leaders of parliamentary groups, and the Jordanian delegation to PACE.

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When obtaining the ‘Partner for democracy’ status with the Assembly, the Parliament of Jordan undertook to continue its “endeavours to raise the awareness of public authorities and civil society as regards abolishing the death penalty and the introduction of a moratorium on executions”.

In its latest evaluation of the Partnership for Democracy, in October 2017, the Assembly regretted the fact that, while a de facto moratorium on executions was purportedly introduced in 2006, courts continued to hand down death sentences and executions were carried out between December 2014 and March 2017.

On 10 February 2019, the Jordan State Security Court issued its second and final ruling concerning a terrorist attack that had taken place in southern Jordan in December 2016. Two brothers, Khalid and Hamza Nayel al-Majali, were sentenced to death.