KAZAKHSTAN: PARLIAMENT RATIFIES INTERNATIONAL PROTOCOL TO ABOLISH DEATH PENALTY
|Kazakh President Kassym Jomart Tokayev
December 30, 2020:
The upper house of Kazakhstan's parliament has ratified the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which represents a formal commitment to abolish the death penalty, a Sputnik correspondent reported on 29 December 2020. (Sources: UrduPoint News/Sputnik, 29/12/2020)
In late September, Kazakhstan's permanent envoy to the United Nations, Kairat Umarov signed the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which commits signatory nations to abolish the death penalty. The document was later approved by the lower house of the country's parliament.
"The signatory countries undertake the following obligations: not to use the death penalty and to take all necessary measures to abolish the death penalty within their jurisdiction.
The only exception is possible in the case of a legal clause on the use of the death penalty in wartime. Kazakhstan intends to use the clause stipulated by the convention providing for the use of the death penalty. Kazakhstan ... reserves the right to use the death penalty in wartime after founding [someone] guilty of particularly grave crimes of a military nature," Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tleuberdi said in the upper house.
The document is now to be signed by the country's president.
In 2003, the first president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, signed a decree introducing a moratorium on the death penalty in the country. The decree suspended the execution of all death sentences but did not prohibit the courts from passing death sentences. Life imprisonment was introduced in Kazakhstan in 2004 as an alternative punishment.