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Al Mezan strongly condemns the issuance of a new death sentence in Gaza and calls for the complete abolition of this practice

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24 May 2023 |Reference 40/2023

Justice palace complexJustice palace complex

On Tuesday morning, 23 May 2023, the Supreme Criminal Chamber of the Court of First Instance in Gaza sentenced a 46-year-old man to death by hanging, following his conviction for the premeditated murder of 64-year-old Saliba Khalil Abu Nseira, on 15 October 2022.

This ruling brings the number of death sentences issued since the beginning of 2023 to four, and 62 since the State of Palestine ratified the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which aims at the abolition of the death penalty, in 2019.

Al Mezan remains deeply concerned about the continued issuance of death sentences in the Gaza Strip and reiterates its strongest condemnation of this practice, which constitutes a form of inhuman punishment in violation of international legal standards. This punishment also violates Palestine’s obligations under international human rights law arising from the State’s accession to international treaties, including ICCPR, its Second Optional Protocol, and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT). Moreover, this punishment is widely regarded as ineffective at deterring or preventing serious crime.

Al Mezan calls on all competent Palestinian authorities to immediately halt the use of the death penalty, abolish it completely, and replace it with more efficient punishments in compliance with Palestine’s international obligations.