Thursday, December 14, 2006
Lawyers request justice minister to suspend execution of convicts
Japan's national association of lawyers on Wednesday requested that
Justice Minister Jinen Nagase not approve the execution of the 96 convicts
currently on death row in the country.
The Japan Federation of Bar Associations presented a letter requesting
that the minister not carry out capital punishment, citing the possibility
of innocent people being wrongly convicted and a trend abroad for the
abolition of the death penalty. The group also recommended the government
impose a temporary moratorium on the death penalty and review the
necessity of the punishment.
The request comes as the year-end approaches, with the Diet ending its
current session on Friday, a period when executions often take place
"while people's attention is drawn to other places," the group said in the
The federation, which includes all lawyers who have passed the Japanese
bar exam, said it has submitted similar requests twice a year to the
justice minister, who holds the discretionary power to give the final
go-ahead for an execution.
The last execution was held Sept. 16, 2005.
Nagase's predecessor Seiken Sugiura, who stepped down in September, did
not issue a go-ahead for the execution of a death-row inmate during his 11
months in office.
(source: Kyodo News)
# 12:07 PM