General rapporteur deeply regrets the decision of the US Federal Government to resume executions

Titus Corlatean (Romania, SOC), PACE general rapporteur on the abolition of the death penalty, expressed his deep regret at the decision of the United States of America Federal Government to resume executions in the week of 13 July.

“Whilst I have every sympathy for all those affected by the crimes, I am deeply disappointed that the United States Federal Government has decided to resume executions after a de facto 17-year moratorium. While 22 states have abolished the capital sentence and governors of three states have established moratoriums on executions, this decision of the Federal Government goes against the growing abolitionist trend in the United States and worldwide”, the rapporteur stated.

“The death penalty is always a cruel and inhuman punishment, whatever the crime, and it should no longer be applied in democratic states that respect human rights. I call on the federal authorities of the United States, an observer state at the Council of Europe, not to proceed with these executions. I also strongly encourage them to reassess at political level the possibility of doing away entirely with the death penalty sentence, in line with our shared values as spelled out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international treaties”, he added.

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Following the U.S. Supreme Court decision of 29 June 2020 rejecting the appeals of four inmates challenging the lethal injection protocols due to be used, the Federal Administration decided to resume executions on 13 July for the first time since 2003. The inmates are scheduled for execution in July and August at a federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana.