the Italian Radicals, the Forum Droghe Association and
dozens of non profit organisations and unions denounced the use of the death
penalty for drug related crimes (including possession) in many countries in the
Middle East, North Africa and South East Asia, such as China, Iran, Egypt,
Indonesia and Saudi Arabia.
On World Day Against Drugs, and in view of the UN appointment of 2009 as the fight against drug trafficking, the organisers of
the conference held at the Italian Senate launched an appeal to reform
international drug policies, which are "strongly centred on stopping
cultivation, trafficking and consumption" to include "safeguarding
health" as well as "fundamental human rights."
In a political strategy presented at the Palazzo Madama,
Radical Senators Marco Perduca and Donatella Poretti, Prc Euro parliamentarian Vittorio
Agnoletto, Secretary of the Drug Forum Franco Corleone, the person responsible
for the politics of toxic dependence of the council Giuseppe Bortone, and Tonio
Dall'Olio from the Abele-Libera Group, explained that the UN strategy on drugs
elaborated in New York in 1998 has "not only been a failure, but in some
cases even counterproductive."
"It is now clear that the objective of eliminating or
significantly reducing in ten years the production of the principle illegal
substances has not been reached," while "the illegal market for drugs
Moreover, the organisations explained that "not
withstanding the number of states that apply the death penalty diminishing, the
number of countries that apply it for drug related crimes has increased."
In view of the UN decision on drug policy, which will be
launched in Vienna in 2009, the promoters of the initiative ask, among other
things, that the Italian Government reassert that the death penalty for drug
related crimes "is against the International Covenant on Civil and
Political Rights" and that "the repression of drug related crimes be
carried out with respect to the rule of law and to the proportion of the
The program was also signed by Antigone, Cnca lazio, Comunita' San Benedetto al
Porto di Genova, Itaca Europa, Lia, Parsec and Arci. The document explains that "as of today, the death penalty has been
abolished in 133 States, but the experts are silent on the fact that in more
than 30 countries among the 64 that still employ capital punishment, it is
applied for drug related crimes."
The data illustrates: "In 1985, the death penalty for drugs was used in 22
countries, 26 in 1995, by the end of 2000 it had increased to 34; in
"recent years there have been executions in "China, Iran, Egypt,
Indonesia, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and Kuwait".
But it is Singapore, "the country where more death sentences for
trafficking, use or possession are carried out, that it is incredible: 76% of
executions between 1994 and 1999 concerned drugs." (Sources: DIRE, 25/06/2008)