Petition Closed

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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.

Guatemala is one of three countries on the American continent that maintains the death penalty in its legislation.

Please sign also the petition calling on the governments of Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago to abolish the mandatory death penalty for all crimes.

Letter to
The Congress of Guatemala
For the past thirteen years Guatemala has not carried out any executions; since 2005, this is because of two rulings from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (Raxcaco Reyes vs Guatemala, judgment of September 15, 2005 and Fermin Ramirez vs Guatemala, judgment of June 20, 2005), which established that Guatemala violates its international obligations as it does not provide a procedure for clemency or pardon. Between 2005 and mid 2012, the Supreme Court of Justice commuted all pending death sentences to terms of imprisonment. One person remained under sentence of death at the end of 2012.
Guatemala is one of three countries on the American continent that maintains the death penalty in its legislation.
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 urge the Congress of the Republic of Guatemala to abolish the death penalty and join the trend towards worldwide abolition. This would be a gesture of goodwill and respect for the rule of law. The Executive should promote the abolition of the death penalty by presenting the necessary bill and we urge public prosecutors not to seek the death penalty.