22nd World Day Against the Death Penalty – The death penalty protects no one.

World Day

on 12 June 2024

Observed every 10 October, the World Day Against the Death Penalty unifies the global abolitionist movement and mobilizes civil society, political leaders, lawyers, public opinion and more to support the call for the universal abolition of capital punishment.

The day encourages and consolidates the political and general awareness of the worldwide movement against the death penalty.

On 10 October 2024 and 2025, the World Day will be dedicated to challenging the misconception that the death penalty can make people and communities safer.

Security is commonly understood as freedom from danger or threat, but its interpretation varies considerably. It is a term rooted in political discourse and often used as a political tactic to influence public opinion and justify security policies. The determination of who are considered threats, and who are to be protected is often influenced by power dynamics, discrimination, and inequality. When applied to criminal justice, security offenses are in many cases broadly defined and can be open to abuse. Using the “security argument” at best politicizes a judicial procedure that is supposed to be impartial and fair, and at worst provides a context for human rights abuses in the name of State protection.

It is undeniable that the death penalty does not protect individuals and societies because it threatens human dignity and reinforces social and economic disparities by disproportionately affecting marginalized groups. To achieve effective long-term solutions, we must prioritize people’s concerns, tackle the root causes of crime and violence and apply a human security approach in conflict resolution and creating safer societies. Abolish the death penalty now!

Scroll down and find more information about security and the death penalty in our leaflet, detailed factsheet, facts & figures sheet, and more! World Day Posters are available in Arabic, English, Farsi, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Lingala, Luganda, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, Swahili, Tagalog, Traditional Chinese, Urdu, and Yoruba.

THE DEATH PENALTY IN PRACTICE

(Statistics from Amnesty International)

  • 112 States have abolished the death penalty for all crimes
  • 9 States have abolished the death penalty for common law crimes
  • 23 States are abolitionists in practice
  • 55 States are retentionists
  • The 5 States that executed the most in the world in 2023 are, in order: China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and the USA.
  • At least 27,687 individuals are known to be under a sentence of death around the world at the end of 2023, of which less than 5% are women (statistic on women sentenced to death by Cornell Center on the Death Penalty Worldwide).

Call for initiatives:

Wherever you are… in Africa, America, Asia, Oceania or Europe,

Whoever you are… NGOs, teachers, lawyers, local representatives, parliamentarians, artists, reporters, religious leaders, citizens,

Whatever your plans are… debates, concerts, press conferences, demonstrations, petitions, educational and cultural activities….

Take action against the death penalty on 10 October 2024!

Join the hundreds of initiatives organized worldwide. In 2023, 57 countries participated in events to support abolition! You can read more about the 2023 World Day in our World Day Report.

Developing World Day plans? Get in touch with the World Coalition to tell us about events scheduled on 10 October 2023.

10 Things YOU can do to end the death penalty

(and for more ideas, check out our updated 2024 Mobilization Kit, also available in French. Mobilization Kits from 2021 are also available in Arabic and Traditional Chinese.):

Take action

  • Organize a gathering. It can take the shape of a demonstration, a webinar, a remote workshop, a debate or a movie screening, an art exhibition or theater performance.

  • Learn and engage with grassroots practices that promote healing and accountability processes in your community, like restorative and transformative justice.

  • Build partnerships with minority group’s rights organizations (women, LGBTQIA+ persons, religious minorities, ethnic minorities...) to raise awareness on how discriminations are an aggravating factor of psychological and physical torture.

  • Lobby politicians to abolish the death penalty and implement preventive security policies.

  • Promote a culture of peace in your community and beyond. Advocate for policies and actions that foster dialogue and nonviolent conflict resolution.

  • Join the events prepared for the abolition of the death penalty worldwide. Visit the World Coalition page for events near you!

  • Donate to a group working to end the death penalty.

  • Follow the social media campaign on Facebook, Instagram and X and launch your own using: #nodeathpenalty

  • Mobilize the media to challenge the security narrative that supports the death penalty. Call for interviews with specialists, testimonies from victims, investigations on local cases and raising awareness campaigns that address the root causes of harm and violence.

  • Participate in Cities Against the Death Penalty/Cities for Life on 30 November 2024 and 2025.

  • Share the campaign

    Share the campaign
  • Previous World Day editions

    Related document(s)

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