Amnesty International today called on ministerial representatives of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) who have been meeting in Islamabad on 29 and 30 January to put human rights at the center of ECO's activities.
The ECO ministerial meeting, which will pave the way for a summit of the heads of ECO member states, is the time when ECO should consider making the end of the death penalty an objective for every ECO member state that has not already abolished it, Amnesty International said.
Amnesty International acknowledges and welcomes the fact that Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan abolished the death penalty in 1998 and 1999 respectively; that Kazakstan declared a moratorium on executions in December 2003; and that Kyrgyzstan on 2 January 2004 extended the moratorium on executions in place since 1998.
Amnesty International is calling on the authorities in Kyrgyzstan and Kazakstan to now fully abolish the death penalty…
Amnesty International has, however, repeatedly voiced concern over continuing executions and the use of the death penalty in Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan…
In Tajikistan executions take place in secret while family members and friends are denied the chance meet with their loved ones one final time. Families are not informed where the individual executed is buried and therefore do not even have a location over which to grieve.
In Uzbekistan scores of people are executed each year in secret following unfair trials. Many of them underwent torture in a system where in such cases corruption is an integral part of the investigation, trial and appeal.
The ECO comprises of ten states: Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
Amnesty International Public Statement, January 30, 2004