Delegate Name: Evie Stornant
Williamston High School
The Kingdom of Belgium
Human Rights Council
Use of the Death Penalty
The use of capital punishment has led to many disputes between nations for a very long time. Capital punishment is the procedure of sentencing offenders of the most serious crimes to death. Now, about three-quarters of the world has completely gotten rid of the death penalty, but there is still that quarter of the world that practices the use of the death penalty or has retained the death penalty but has not used it in recent years. In most countries where the death penalty still exists, it is used only in the most pressing cases because it is thought that the use of capital punishment will dissuade crime.
As of August 1, 1996, the use of capital punishment in Belgium during times of war and peace, has been completely abolished, based solely on the view in Belgium that the use of the death penalty violates the rights of humans, but the last execution ever held in Belgium was in July of 1863 when a farmer was executed for murder. Belgium has been focused on getting rid of the death penalty due to many reasons such as the fact that, although some countries see it differently, the death penalty does not directly effect crime. The Belgium human rights policy has prioritized the abolishment of the death penalty because of many other reasons too such as a fear that someone who is truly innocent will be killed and the death penalty bring upon damaging consequences for Belgium’s international relations.
The Kingdom of Belgium is currently a part of a numerous amount of international coalitions to support the abolishment of the death penalty. To take a step into action, Belgium has aligned itself with the same priorities as the EU, which is another rival of the death penalty. To continue this battle against the death penalty, Belgium and other countries with the same mindset towards the death penalty continue to regularly bring forward a resolution concerning the death penalty in the UN Human Rights Council. Every three years hundreds of people opposed to the death penalty gather together to share their thoughts and opinions on the subject, and in 2019 Belgium was the host of this 7th World Congress against the death penalty. This is another example of the actions Belgium is taking to help dispose of the death penalty all over the world.
“Capital Punishment” Bureau of Justice Statistics https://bjs.ojp.gov/topics/corrections/capital-punishment
“Map: Which countries still have the death penalty?” Infographic News https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2023/5/16/map-which-countries-still-have-the-death-penalty-2023#:~:text=Nine%20countries%20have%20abolished%20the,and%20implement%20the%20death%20penalty.
“Belgium wants a world without the death penalty” FPS Foreign Affairs, 20 Oct. 2022, https://diplomatie.belgium.be/en/policy/policy-areas/highlighted/belgium-wants-world-without-death-penalty