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Fiji supports abolition of death penalty

October 1, 2015 7:13 pm

Foreign Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola has delivered Fiji’s statement at a human rights event at the United Nations.

In delivering Fiji’s statement, Minister Kubuabola said that, Fiji abolished the death penalty formally in February this year through the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Amendment Act 2015.

Ratu Inoke said Fiji’s move on the death penalty stemmed from the growing international trend to remove capital punishment.

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The Minister added the move is consistent with Fiji’s new Constitution which guarantees every person the right to life and its not relevant to Fiji, its justice system and its people.

He advised the UN event that Fiji was aware that the death penalty has little deterrent effect on the committing of serious crimes, and that sentencing policies now require a delicate balance between deterrence, rehabilitation, denunciation and punishment.

The minister also said a death sentence, and especially a mandatory death sentence, fails to give the judge the discretion to balance these factors and to pass a sentence which is suited to the individual.

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