Italy to push for death penalty moratorium at UN
The Italian government today said it would take “formal steps” in a renewed push for a UN call for a moratorium on the death penalty following Saddam Hussein’s execution.
The premier’s office said in a statement that Italy would seek the support of other countries that oppose capital punishment to put the issue of a moratorium to the UN General Assembly.
Italian Foreign Minister Massimo D’Alema has said that Premier Romano Prodi’s government would work for the end of the death penalty worldwide following denunciations across Europe of Saddam’s hanging.
In the past, Italy has lobbied unsuccessfully for United Nations’ action against the death penalty. Italy is now one of the rotating countries on the UN Security Council.
Saddam’s execution by hanging on Saturday was denounced virtually across Italy’s political spectrum, with former premier and conservative opposition leader Silvio Berlusconi calling the killing a political error and centre-left leader Prodi expressing worry that the execution would fuel more violence in Iraq.