The Ministry of Foreign Affairs Statement on European and World Day against the Death Penalty.
Today, the 10th of October, we celebrate the European and World Day against the Death Penalty. The Portuguese Government joins all those who celebrate this day.
Portugal opposes the application, under any circumstances, of this penalty, which constitutes a violation of the human right to life, enshrined since 1948 in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The death penalty represents a total disregard for human dignity and Portugal repudiates all arguments used to justify it.
Within the United Nations framework, Portugal has been one of the strongest defenders of the resolution on a moratorium on the death penalty since it was first adopted, in 2007. We hope that this resolution may continue to receive an increasingly significant adherence. Nationally and in line with the position of the European Union, Portugal reiterates its unwavering commitment to defend, in the United Nations and other international fora, the definitive and total elimination of capital punishment. At the European Council, in Strasbourg, Portugal takes on the role of leading country, speaking on behalf of the EU whenever a debate on this subject arises.
Consistent with Portugal's pioneer gesture in Europe and the World in 1867, by abolishing the death penalty, the Portuguese Government reiterates its call for all countries that have not yet done so to establish a de facto moratorium, as a first step towards the abolition, in law and in practice, of the death penalty.
Lisbon, October 10, 2019