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Singapore's imminent execution of Tangaraju Suppiah - Statement from The Death Penalty Project

  • News
  • 25 Apr 2023

Responding to news of the scheduled execution of Tangaraju Suppiah on Wednesday 26 April, The Death Penalty Project’s Co-Executive Directors, Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar said:

“It is hugely disappointing news that the scheduled execution of Tangaraju Suppiah will take place – the first execution in the country this year. Singapore should look to its regional neighbour, Malaysia, who has taken the significant step in abolishing the mandatory death penalty only a week ago. Trends show that the use of capital punishment across the world continues to decline, with more and more countries taking the necessary measures to restrict its use. At the end of 2022, 165 countries had abolished the death penalty in law or are classified by the United Nations as abolitionist de facto.” [1]

“The ‘war on drugs’ in Southeast Asia, has led to countries, like Singapore, using increasingly harsh measures to deter drug-related crime. It continues to be the case that those largely considered vulnerable in society, those from lower socio-economic backgrounds, or foreign nationals often fall victim to the ruthless drug penalties in the region. Evidence also contradicts the common assumption that the death penalty is an effective and successful method to deterring drug trafficking offences. Our latest research investigating those convicted of drug offences in Indonesia further demonstrates this.”

“Tangaraju Suppiah’s case also raises serious concerns regarding wrongful convictions and the severity of issues around due process of law. No legal system, no matter how developed, can ever be error free.”

Notes to Editors

[1] United Nations definition for a state which retains the death penalty for ordinary crimes but have not executed anyone during the past 10 years or more

The Death Penalty Project

The Death Penalty Project is an international legal action NGO with special consultative status before the United Nations Economic and Social Council. The organisation provides free representation to people facing the death penalty worldwide, with a focus on the Commonwealth. It uses the law to protect prisoners facing execution and promote fair criminal justice systems, where the rights of all people are respected.

For interview requests, quotes or more information please contact Isobelle Degale, Communications Officer [email protected]

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