state of civil and political rights: Partly free
constitution: 23 December 2001
legal system: new code incorporates French and Islamic law
legislative system: unicameral Assembly of the Union
judicial system: Supreme Court, two members are appointed by the president, two members are elected by the Federal Assembly, one by the Council of each island, and former presidents of the republic
religion: Sunni Muslim 98%, Roman Catholic 2%
death row: 6 (as of 17 November 2014, in the Moroni prison, according to the General Prosecutor Mahammoud Soilihi)
year of last executions: 0-0-1997
death sentences: 0
international treaties on human rights and the death penalty:
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (signed only)
Convention on the Rights of the Child
Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (signed only)
African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights
Statute of the International Criminal Court (which excludes the death penalty)
Aggravated murder, treason and spying are capital crimes.
The legal system incorporates Islamic law as well as French legal codes.
Comoros has endured more than 20 coups, or attempted coups, since gaining
independence from France in 1975.
In 2000, the three islands - Moheli, Anjouan and Grande Comore – negotiated the
Fomboni Accords, a power-sharing agreement, in which the federal presidency
rotates among the three islands and each island maintains its own local
On his election in 1996, then president Mohamed Taki Abdoulkarin announced that
people found guilty of murder could be condemned to death according to Islamic
The first execution since the country became independent in 1975 was carried
out on September 18, 1996. Another execution was reported in 1997. There were six death row inamtes in the Moroni prison on 17 November 2014, according to General Prosecutor Mahammoud Soilihi.
On 31 January 2014, the Comoros was reviewed under the
Universal Periodic Review of the UN Human Rights Council. In its responses to
the recommendations received, the Government accepted those to ratify the
Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political
Rights, aiming at abolishing the death penalty, as a step towards accelerating
the approval of the new draft Penal Code and the draft Criminal Procedure Code
that would include the abolition of the death penalty. The Comorian delegation
said the country had been strengthening its legal arsenal through the
submission to Parliament of draft legislation on the reform of the Criminal
Code and the Code of Criminal Procedure. The bill on the revision of the
Criminal Code provided for the abolition of the death penalty. Comoros informed
that the draft Criminal Code had already been adopted by the law commission of
the National Assembly, and that the plenary would adopt the law soon.
On December 19, 2016, Comoros abstained on the Resolution on a Moratorium on
the Use of the Death Penalty at the UN General Assembly as in 2010, 2012 and 2014. In
2007 and 2008 Comoros voted against.