An ICDP delegation was invited to participate by the OSCE on 2 October when it conducted a Working Session (Session 15) which focused on the Rule of Law as part of its annual Human Dimension Implementation Meeting (HDIM).
ICDP Commissioner Hanne Sophie Greve moderated the discussion on exchange of views on the question of the death penalty in the session (see OSCE agenda, page 30).
During the lively discussion which involved OSCE member states and civil society organisations, several speakers described the death penalty as an affront to human dignity and called for its abolition in the United States and Belarus, the two participating OSCE States in which it is still carried out. A number of speakers described a global momentum towards abolition of the death penalty and pointed to a growing awareness in all continents of the need to tackle the issue. Where abolition had not yet been achieved, some speakers called for the imposition of a moratorium on the use of the death penalty. Several recommendations were made to the participating States and the OSCE and its institutions on this issue.
For more details on the working session and recommendations, please visit the following link of Rapporteur’s Report for Working Session 15: Rule of Law II.
On the same day, the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights presented its 2013 background paper on the death penalty in the OSCE area. In the report, a mention was made about ICDP’s mission to Tajikistan in May 2013 which was led by Commissioner Ruth Dreifuss.
Prior to moderating the OSCE session, Commissioner Greve participated in a side event: “Abolishing Death Penalty in the OSCE Region: the Role of Civil Society and Intergovernmental Organizations”. Noting the human dimension of security and co-operation, which was the overarching subject of the conference, Commissioner Greve addressed eloquently the vision and goal of abolishing the death penalty in an age of increased security concerns. The focus of the discussion was abolishing death penalty in the OSCE region and the crucial role of civil society and how this contributed to enhancing human dignity. The side event was co-organized by Andorra, the European Union, Norway, San Marino, Serbia and Switzerland (see attached flyer featuring invitation to the side event).
For further information on the OSCE and the HDIM, please go to http://www.osce.org/hdim_2013