On Friday, the Third Committee of the General Assembly of the United Nations voted a resolution calling for a moratorium on capital punishment. Readers of the blog will recall the successful adoption of such a resolution last year, for the first time. This year the result was stronger than last year, proof of the continuing trend towards total abolition of capital punishment. On Friday, there were more votes for the resolution and fewer against than last year, and the resolution had more co-sponsors. In all, 105 countries voted in favour of the resolution, 48 against and 31 abstained (the result last year, in the plenary General Assembly, was 104 – 54 -29).Five Arab League states changed their vote compared with last year. In 2007, Bahrain, Jordan, Oman, and Mauritania voted against; this year they abstained. Somalia voted against last year, but was absent this year.
The resolution proceeds to the plenary session of the General Assembly, where we can expect its adoption in mid to late-December.