International condemnation of the American Death Penalty
April 10, 2001
US setting the wrong example
European lawmakers and accuse the US
European lawmakers and international activists on Monday called for a worldwide ban on the death penalty and accused the United States of setting the wrong example for other countries.
The parliamentary presidents of France, Germany and Italy were among the politicians that met in Paris ahead of an international conference against the death penalty to be held in Strasbourg from June 21 to 23. "The fact that America continues to operate with the death penalty is a very big drawback and handicap to everyone else," said Russel Johnston, president of the Council of Europe's parliamentary assembly. The U.S. position "can be used by Saudi Arabia, it can be used by Bangladesh, by China as a justification," he said.
"It is simply unjust for the United States not to respect international agreements. This is barbaric and unworthy of a state based on the rule of law." German Minister of Justice Herta Daeubler-Gmelin, commenting Arizonas' execution of the LaGrand brothers