29 December 2020 :
There have been no executions of death row inmates in Japan throughout 2020, making it the first time in nine years where capital punishment was not carried out in the country.
This was confirmed on 28 December, as the penal detention facilities act stipulates that the death penalty is not to be administered between 29 December and 3 January. According to the Ministry of Justice, there were 110 death row inmates as of 28 December.
Capital punishment has been carried out every year, excluding 2011, since its resumption in 1993, following a three-year, four-month hiatus.
A total of nine justice ministers ordered the executions of a total of 46 individuals between 2012 and 2019. The year 2018 saw the largest number of prisoners put to death, at 15.
In 2020, Justice Minister Masako Mori did not order for capital punishment to be carried out. There have also been no death penalty executions under Justice Minister Yoko Kamikawa, who began her third term in September.