26 March 2022 :
Kazakhstan's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York, Ambassador Magzhan Ilyassov, deposited with the United Nations the instrument of ratification of the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, aiming at the abolition of the death penalty, Kazinform News Agency reported on 25 March 2022, citing the Kazakh MFA.
This step confirms Kazakhstan’s firm commitment to further consolidate human rights and fulfill its international obligations in this area.
Kazakhstan became the 90th out of 193 UN Member States to accede to the Protocol. The first step of Kazakhstan's accession to this international document was its signing in New York on 23 September 2020. It was on 2 January 2021 that the nation’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev signed the law ratifying this document. The provisions of the Protocol required that the country's national criminal legislation be brought into compliance with the Protocol's norms. All procedures were therefore followed by Kazakhstan.
On 29 December 2021, the President signed the Law «On Introduction of Amendments and Addenda to Certain Legislative Acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan Concerning Abolition of the Death Penalty». Thus, accession to the Second Optional Protocol secured the complete abolition of capital punishment in Kazakhstan.
This measure helped continue the course towards the overall humanizing of criminal legislation in the country.
The death penalty in Kazakhstan was suspended by the Decree of the President of Kazakhstan of 17 December 2003, which introduced the moratorium.
On 16 March 2022, in his State of the Nation Address to the People of Kazakhstan «New Kazakhstan: the Path of Renewal and Modernization», President Tokayev noted that «in order to finally establish the decision to abolish the death penalty, the Constitution must be amended accordingly».