Amnesty International – 2012-09-04 01:07:01
Stop The Killing Frenzy in Gambia
The Killing Frenzy in Gambia Has Already Begun
In a televised speech, Gambian President Yahya Jammeh announced his intention to execute all death row inmates by mid-September 2012. We must stop the insanity.
The Gambian President has decided to execute all death row inmates in just a matter of days, despite the serious concerns over whether the inmates received fair trials at all. There’s no time for appeals or questions. And to prove President Yahya Jammeh means every word — the executions have already begun.
This past weekend, nine individuals were dragged from their cells without warning or good-byes and executed. Just like that. The prisoners were lined up and shot by firing squad. Now 38 others are at extreme risk of meeting the same end. â€¨â€¨
ACTION: Don’t let Gambia Kill One More Prisoner — Click Here to stop the execution spree! â€¨
(August 27, 2012) — President Yahya Jammeh has set mid-September 2012 — that’s no more than 3 weeks from now — as a deadline for carrying out this sickening plan. But he’s already proven that he’s not willing to wait long. â€¨â€¨
The only thing close to an explanation the President has given was during the televised speech in which he announced these plans, claiming that he wants “to rid the country of all criminals”. â€¨â€¨
This is no way for a justice system, or a President for that matter, to operate. The death penalty in Gambia is often used to punish political dissent, disguised as “treason”. President Jammeh has a history of making these kinds of cruel and outrageous remarks. He’s recently threatened to behead all homosexuals and has urged Gambians to stop buying newspapers so that journalists would starve to death. â€¨â€¨
The insanity stops here — no more executions in Gambia! â€¨â€¨
What’s more shocking — the executions Gambia carried out last week were the first in 27 years — effectively ending an unofficial moratorium! Gambia is now the first West African country to execute prisoners in recent history. â€¨â€¨
These executions are a major blow to the global movement to abolish the death penalty. They violate international and regional human rights standards to which Gambia is a party. We can’t let Gambia take a giant leap backwards for human rights — stop the executions now! â€¨â€¨
In Solidarity, â€¨â€¨
Emily Helmsâ€¨Country Specialist,
Gambiaâ€¨Amnesty International USA
A.J.J. Yahya Jammeh – President,
Lamin A. M. S. Jobarteh – Minister of Justice and Attorney General,
Brima M. Kamada – Committee on Human Rights and Child Protection,
Alieu Momodou – Ambassador
Subject: 9 Executions are 9 too Many, Abolish the Death Penalty
I am deeply disturbed by the nine executions that took place on the night of August 23, 2012, and by the intended execution of the remaining thirty-eight inmates on death row.
These executions represent The Gambia’s stark divergence from the global trend toward abolition of the death penalty, as called for in resolutions by the UN General Assembly in 2007, 2008, and 2010. The African Union has also called for a moratorium on executions among member states in its Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rightsâ€”to which the Gambia is a signatory.
Indeed, after 27 years of effective moratorium, The Gambia now has the distinction of being the only West African country to execute a prisoner in recent years.
I strongly urge you to immediately retract the call for execution of the remaining death row inmates and to restore the moratorium on executions, with an urgent view to abolishing the death penalty.
Thank you for your attention on this urgent matter.
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