Death Penalty Database Continues to Provide Unparalleled Access to Worldwide Death Penalty Trends and Analysis

We continue to track trends and offer continuous updates on the death penalty worldwide through our comprehensive Death Penalty Worldwide Database. Most recently, we published new reports on death penalty practices in Zimbabwe,Papua New Guinea, the US and Mauritania.

Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque
The Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei.

In positive news this year, Brunei declared a moratorium on executions in May 2019, after an international outcry greeted its plans to punish same-sex relations with execution by stoning. In the United States, New Hampshire became the 21st state to abolish capital punishment. This means that for the first time, half of all US states either have abolished the death penalty or have gubernatorial moratoriums in place.

Nonetheless, we have also observed an unwelcome expansion of the death penalty under the banner of the “war on drugs.” Despite international law forbidding the application of the death penalty for crimes other than intentional killing, new legislation passed or pending in Egypt, Bangladesh, and Pakistan may increase the scope of the death penalty for drug-related offenses. Furthermore, former President Sirisena announced an end to Sri Lanka’s moratorium on executions and signed death warrants for four defendants convicted of drug-related charges.