Source: The Economist
Let’s just jump right in and start with the negative and get it over with! Most of you will probably look at the left chart first, which indicates that the number of executions has increased in recent years. This is of course horrifying, to be blunt. However, what should be considered is the fact that 90% of all the executions in 2015 (and most likely in the years before as well) were carried out in just 3 countries!: Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Iran. China is not included in this list, as it considers the number of death sentences and executions a state secret. Estimates however are in the thousands.
What is encouraging however is the fact that there more nations (102) that have abolished the death penalty in law than those which haven’t. If you add the countries which still have the death penalty in their legal system but haven’t carried out any in the past decades than the number stands at 142(!) as of the end of 2015. Also, the trend to abolish this cruel and archaic penalts is rising steeply as you can see in the graph on the right.
Finally, the number of countries which carried out executions has also dropped by 50% (from around 40 to slightly more than 20) since 1982.
I think the days of the death penalty are counted. It will still take a while until every country abolishes it and it could certainly be accelerated if the U.S., China would lead the way as role models but eventually, there will be no more executions anywhere in the world.
In think we will reach this goal by 2030 or 2035 at the latest! What do you think? Let me know in the comment section below!
Featured image courtesy of “WilliamCho” via Pixabay