Capital punishment has taken many forms through history, each method more humane than the previous.Yet the question remains, can capital punishment be considered humane? Current UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon stated, “The taking of a life is too absolute, too irreversible” at a New York conference in July 2012 according to UN press documents. The UN evidently is against the implementation of capital punishment as it rejects the the Declaration of Human Rights, however, not every country shares the same view.
Legitimizing the Sentence
One of the problems the UN faces is the handling of those wrongfully accused and sentenced to death. One such prevalent case is the ‘West Memphis Three’ case where three individuals were wrongfully accused of the crime of the murder of three children. 18 years later, the men were proven innocent through DNA testing. Problems thus exist with the legitimizing of capital punishment yet some governments refuse its abolition.
An active member in the fight for the abolition of the death penalty is the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights. One presented solution of the UN is the implementation of a Moratorium on the Law of Death Penalty which is the placement of a temporary ban on imposing capital punishment.
An interesting debate with a hopeful outcome, it isn’t certain if the UN will be able to fully implement the Moratorium. However, how will the delegates at THIMUN handle the cause?
By Vanlee Trindade
Photo By Yasmin Majali