On 13-14 October, Kigali was the venue of the Regional Conference on the Abolition and/or Moratorium on the Execution of the Death Penalty. The conference was organised by the government of Rwanda and Hands Off Cain, with the support of the European Union, the African Union and the World Coalition against the Death Penalty. It aimed at launching a major debate on the need to abolish the death penalty on the African continent or at least to impose a moratorium on executions across the continent.
Several high-level personalities such as the President of Rwanda Paul Kagame and Chairperson of the African Union Jean Ping participated in the conference. Former Prime Minister of Haiti and Member of the International Commission against the Death Penalty Michèle Duvivier Pierre-Louis was also present. She chaired the first session, which focused on death penalty and public opinion. “There is need for commitments by presidents themselves. Otherwise, we shall not be able to abolish the death penalty unless our governments intervene”, she said.
The conference concluded with the adoption of a resolution that was unanimously approved, asking African countries to sign and support treaties and international resolutions on the death penalty and on the moratorium on executions, with a commitment by the governments to transpose the contents into the legislations of each country.
Click here to read more on the African conference in Kigali.