Busted: Duterte said some EU countries have death penalty but ALL EU member-states have abolished it

President Rodrigo Duterte slammed the European Union for urging the Philippines to rethink the restoration of the death penalty in the country. During his speech in Myanmar on March 19, he hit the EU for “imposing” their culture and “picking” on ASEAN countries, before saying that they are acting as though some EU countries are not implementing the capital punishment.
Media organization Vera Files quoted part of Duterte’s speech.

“You know guys, I will talk in English… Do not impose your culture or your belief in what would be a government in this planet. Do not impose on other countries, especially us. Ito, ito noon paborito nila itong mga ASEAN countries… because may, there’s a death penalty in Indonesia, Malaysia and I’m trying to relieve it and I’m trying… as if the other countries of EU walang death penalty. Marami pa rin.”

You can watch this in the video below, from mark 29:30 to 30:07:

However, Vera Files’ fact checking process revealed that all of the 28 countries that belong to the EU have abolished the death penalty, as per the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. The EU member-states have been legally bound to the charter since 2009.

Article 2 of the charter states the following provisions:

  1. Everyone has the right to life.
  2. No one shall be condemned to the death penalty, or executed.

On top of the said charter, the EU member-states ratified the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. It is also known as the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), which was enforced in 1953 in all 47 European countries. Three decades later, Protocol 6 banned death penalty, with the only exception being war time. In 2002, a more significant change happened with the complete abolishment of the said penalty.

Vera Files pointed out that among all the European countries, only three countries – Belarus, Russia, and Kazakhstan – have death penalty laws. Of the three, only Belarus is actively holding executions. Kazahstan still retained the law, but only for war and other special circumstances. The Constitutional Court in Russia issued a moratorium on death penalty in 1999, causing the country to stop any execution.

Sources: ( , )

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