Today, on the occasion of World Day against the Death Penalty, the United Kingdom reaffirms our strong opposition to the death penalty in all circumstances.
We emphasize the fact that the use of the death penalty undermines human dignity, runs contrary to the right to life, and is unnecessary. There is no conclusive evidence that the death penalty has any value as a deterrent to serious crimes; and any miscarriage of justice leading to its imposition, is irreversible and irreparable.
We highlight and welcome the global trend towards abolition, as evidenced by the largest margin ever recorded in favour of establishing a worldwide moratorium, at the UN General Assembly vote in December 2012.
We are encouraged to continue to work together, and with the UN, wherever possible, to increase the number of abolitionist countries, or countries with a moratorium on the use of the death penalty. Our aim is to secure further restrictions on the use of the death penalty, or to ensure that the EU minimum standards on its use are met.
We will continue to work closely with all interlocutors, governments and civil society, with a view to encouraging all states to look at alternatives to the death penalty.