UN / AMNESTY DEATH PENALTY REPORT

Preview Language:   Original
10-Apr-2019 00:02:30
In its 2018 report on the death penalty, Amnesty International found that global executions fell by 31 percent marking the lowest recorded number in a decade. UNIFEED

Available Language: English
Type
Language
Format
Acquire
/
English
Other Formats
Description
STORY: UN / AMNESTY DEATH PENALTY REPORT
TRT: 2:30
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH

DATELINE: 10 APRIL 2019, NEW YORK CITY

SHOTLIST:

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, UNHQ exterior

10 APRIL 2019, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, press room
3. Wide shot, Mutasah at dais
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Tawanda Mutasah, Senior Director for Law and Policy, Amnesty International:
“The persistence, therefore, in the use of the death penalty by a small number of states is shameful, in Amnesty’s view, and it adds to discrimination. And adding to the gravity of the problem, we also have seen some of the ways in which the death penalty has been used contrary to international law; although Amnesty opposes the death penalty in all its forms under all circumstances.”
5. Wide shot, graph showing executions around the world in 2018
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Tawanda Mutasah, Senior Director for Law and Policy, Amnesty International:
“It is not just about criminal justice. It is about discrimination; it is about vulnerability; it is ultimately about who we are. So, the death penalty is not only the ultimate cruel, inhumane and degrading punishment, but we also see that it is applied often on a discriminatory basis and in an arbitrary way. And in many cases people do not have access to fair trials, to representation that is adequate and effective, or to any other standard of protection under international law.”
7. Wide shot, Mutasah at dais
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Tawanda Mutasah, Senior Director for Law and Policy, Amnesty International:
“The number of known executions dropped by 31 percent and reached the lowest figure that we have reported in a decade. This reflected a significant reduction in some of the world’s leading executing countries such as Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, and Somalia. And this was a positive thing. And this reinforced the trend generally where we are seeing that the death penalty is becoming more and more consigned to the history books as a case study in human cruelty, degradation, and inhumanity.”
9. Wide shot, graph showing five top executioners in the world
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Tawanda Mutasah, Senior Director for Law and Policy, Amnesty International:
“As in previous years, this global total is distorted because of our lack of access into China figures, and that is an important issue because we continue to call upon China, Belarus, Vietnam, and any other state where, de facto, death penalty statistics may be regarded as a state secret, to make sure that those statistics are available and open, and that information is available and open to people.”
11. Wide shot, press room

STORYLINE:

In its 2018 report on the death penalty, Amnesty International found that global executions fell by 31 percent marking the lowest recorded number in a decade.

Speaking to reporters in New York today (10 Apr), Amnesty’s Senior Director for Law and Policy Tawanda Mutasah said 690 known executions were carried out in 2018 and at least 19,336 remained sentenced to death world-wide by the end of the year. He said this reflected a “significant reduction in some of the world’s leading executing countries such as Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, and Somalia.”

Mutasah stressed that the sharp fall also “reinforced the trend generally where we are seeing that the death penalty is becoming more and more consigned to the history books as a case study in human cruelty, degradation, and inhumanity.”

Mutasah noted that despite the positive developments, there were also some negative trends. He said Belarus, Japan, Singapore, South Sudan, and the United States reported an increase in the total number of executions. There was also a rise in the number of death sentences in some countries, most notably in Egypt and Iraq.

The Senior Director reported that, as in previous years, the global total was “distorted” because of Amnesty’s “lack of access into China figures.” He said Amnesty believes China is executing thousands of people every year, putting the country firmly in the lead on the top executioners list, which includes Iran, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, and Iraq.

He reiterated Amnesty’s call upon “China, Belarus, Vietnam, and any other state where, de facto, death penalty statistics may be regarded as a state secret, to make sure that those statistics are available and open.”

Mutasah noted that, frequently, economically vulnerable persons, foreign nationals, persons exercising their human rights, and religious and ethnic minorities are disproportionately represented among those sentenced to death. He added, “The persistence, therefore, in the use of the death penalty by a small number of states is shameful, in Amnesty’s view, and it adds to discrimination. And adding to the gravity of the problem, we also have seen some of the ways in which the death penalty has been used contrary to international law; although Amnesty opposes the death penalty in all its forms under all circumstances.”

The Senior Director underscored that the death penalty issue was “not just about criminal justice; it is about discrimination; it is about vulnerability; it is ultimately about who we are. So, the death penalty is not only the ultimate cruel, inhumane and degrading punishment, but we also see that it is applied often on a discriminatory basis and in an arbitrary way. And in many cases people do not have access to fair trials, to representation that is adequate and effective, or to any other standard of protection under international law.”
Series
Category
Corporate Subjects
Creator
UNIFEED
Alternate Title
unifeed190410h
Asset ID
2378307