NONVIOLENT RADICAL PARTY: PROHIBITION ON DRUGS ENHANCES DEATH PENALTY
June 25, 2014: Policies and ideology of the prohibition on drugs have made and continue to make a significant contribution to the application of the death penalty in 2013 and the first six months of 2014.
Connected to the so-called âwar on drugsâ executions last year were 355 in five countries. Only in Iran there have been at least 328, while in 2014 there were 167, with Iran always in pole position with 164 executions.
This is what emerged today at a press conference called by the Nonviolent Radical Party on the occasion of the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking which is celebrated tomorrow, during which were announced a series of data and the contents of an open letter to the secretary of the Radicali Italiani, Rita Bernardini, sent to the President of the Council of Ministers, Matteo Renzi, the Minister of Justice, Andrea Orlando, and the Minister of Health, Beatrice Lorenzin.
In 2013, in the name of the war on drugs, the executions were mainly in Iran with 328 cases, of which half related to drug crimes, except to note - it was said during the press conference - that in some cases the affected people were not traffickers but rather political opponents.
In Saudi Arabia there have been 24 executions, two in Indonesia, and surely one in Malaysia. The absolute primacy belongs to China: though an official data is not available, the Radicals estimate that executions in 2013 may have been 3000.
In ten other states, convictions were handed down but not implemented. It happened in Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Laos, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam and Yemen.
In 2014, 3 executions for drugs were carried out in Saudi Arabia, and 164 in Iran.
In Vietnam, a court sentenced to death in a single day for drug trafficking as many as 30 people.
These data should be added to those on the market value of the global drug trade, estimated at least a billion dollars a year.
To cope with this traffic, according to the Radicals, the current policies should definitely be revised.
It is for this reason that Bernardini, among other things, asked in her letter to hold for the next autumn the Sixth National Conference on Drugs, an appointment forÂ âa reflection without blinkers on the failure of prohibitionist policies, in Italy and in the rest of the world".
"For years in Italy we are victims of a prohibitionist approach with regard to drugs, said during the press conference, Marco Perduca, former senator and representative to the UN of the Radical Party. âUnder the management Giovanardi-Serpelloni (a former minister and the former head of anti-drugs policies; Ed), the first victim of the war on drugs were the data, with figures that were regularly mystified and manipulatedâ.
Always ahead of the International Day Against Drug tomorrow, five MPs of the Democratic Party have submitted a point of order in the House in which they addressed ten questions to the Government. Among these, if the Government shares an incisive decriminalization of minor offenses and if it wants to appoint a Secretary and a scientific director for the National Anti-Drug Department.
The first signatory of the point of order is MP Roberto Rampi, who yesterday also suscribed to the Nonviolent Radical Party.
During the press conference were presented to the public four vignettes drawn by Flavio Avy Candeli and John Modica in support of the campaign "Support. Do not Punish" that was already launched in 50 countries around the world.
This global campaign, called "Hey, We Need To Talk About Drugs" was launched by the Global Commission on Drug Policy and the Open Society Foundations. In Italy the campaign is supported by the Luca Coscioni Association for Freedom of Scientific Research and by the Nonviolent Radical Party. (Sources: ANSA, H0C, 25/06/2014)