Sunday, October 29, 2006

Government ‘has will’ to scrap death penalty

Morocco has the political will to abolish the death penalty, which has not been applied since 1994, the country’s justice minister told a newspaper yesterday.

"We are ready to implement the change especially since the trend, at the international level, is towards abolition," Mohamed Bouzoubaa told the pro-government newspaper Al Ittihad Al Ichtiraki.

He said there were two choices: "to cut drastically the number of articles in the penal code and the military justice code requiring the death penalty ... or to abolish it for good."

"The political, legal will and the courage exist around this (second) trend," he told the newspaper.

"In the space of 14 years Moroccan courts handed down 130 death sentences, and only three were carried out," he said without specifying the period in question.

"Over the past 12 years royal pardons have commuted 222 death sentences to life imprisonment."

Moroccan courts still pronounce death sentences but the last execution took place in 1994, that of a senior police officer sentenced for multiple rapes.

The abolition of the death penalty is one of the chief demands of Moroccan human rights groups


Post a Comment

<< Home