On 10 October 2013, the 11th World Day Against the Death Penalty is dedicated to the Greater Caribbean where few executions take place, but where a core of countries remain strongly opposed to abolition.
Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago are the only two countries that continue to hand down the mandatory death penalty for murder in the Caribbean.
Please sign also the petition calling on the Congress of Guatemala to abolish the death penalty.
The United Nations Human Rights Committee has said that “the automatic and mandatory imposition of the death penalty constitutes an arbitrary deprivation of life, in violation of article 6, paragraph 1, of the [International] Covenant [on Civil and Political Rights], in circumstances where the death penalty is imposed without any possibility of taking into account the defendant’s personal circumstances or the circumstances of the particular offence.”
Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago are the only 2 countries that continue to hand down the mandatory death penalty for murder in the Caribbean.
Since 2009, the Barbadian authorities pledged to abolish the mandatory death penalty in order to comply with two Inter-American Court of Human Rights judgments.
Although the criminal justice system must, through fair and effective measures, prevent and curb violent crimes and protect victims, we hold that the death penalty is a human rights violation, that it is not a deterrent, it does not make societies safer, and it does not address the root causes of crime and violence.
We call for courageous political leadership in Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago to abolish the mandatory death penalty for all crimes as a first step towards full abolition.