“Death is not justice. Capital punishment replaces justice with revenge. This has to be wrong – and it must be stopped”, said Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić in a panel discussion at the opening of the 8th World Congress against the Death Penalty which is held from 15-18 November in Berlin. The event brings together more than 1000 participants from 90 countries. “The Council of Europe will continue to make the case that the death penalty should never be handed down”, she stressed.
Being asked about the threats for the abolition of the death penalty in the context of the current situation in Europe, the Secretary General referred to the practice in Belarus and the death sentences passed in the occupied Ukrainian Donbas this summer: “But here in Europe, the picture is far from perfect.” While the 46 member states that make up the Council of Europe comprised a death-penalty free zone, she underlined: “Even in societies that have abolished capital punishment, we must never stop our work to inform the population about why this was the right thing to do.”
The agenda of Marija Pejčinović Burić’s visit to Germany also included high-level meetings with the Minister of Foreign Affairs Annalena Baerbock and the Minister of Justice Marco Buschmann.