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Suhakam lauds support for death penalty moratorium
Published on: Saturday, November 21, 2020
By: NST
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PETALING JAYA: The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) has welcomed the government’s support for the United Nations’ (UN) call for a moratorium on the death penalty.

On Nov 17, during the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, 120 member states, including Malaysia, supported the resolution for a moratorium on the use of the death penalty.

Among others, the resolution recommended that UN states should guarantee the right to a fair trial and limit the imposition of the death penalty to the most serious crimes, pending the abolition of the death penalty.

Suhakam said, to date, Malaysia had eight laws stipulating 12 offences which carry the mandatory death penalty and 21 offences which carry the discretionary death penalty, including the Penal Code and the Firearms (Increased Penalties) Act 1971.

“In 2019, the government established a special committee to study and make recommendations on the alternatives to the mandatory death penalty and transitional measures for the current death row prisoners,” it said in a statement today.

Suhakam said the committee had conducted numerous public consultations across the country with the relevant stakeholders, including government agencies, civil society organisations, families of death row prisoners and victims, as well as the death row prisoners themselves.

The committee had submitted its report to the government for consideration in February this year, Suhakam said.

“In this regard, Suhakam urges the government to make public the report of the special committee and expedite efforts to abolish the mandatory death penalty in the country as the first step towards total abolition of the death penalty.”



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