The Council of Europe continues to call on Minsk to introduce a moratorium on the death penalty as a first step towards its abolition, a spokesperson for the organization told Sputnik, commenting on the consent of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko to put the issue to a referendum.
On Tuesday, Lukashenko said that the majority of Belarusians, in his opinion, are in favor of preserving capital punishment, but agreed to submit the issue of its abolition to a separate referendum in the future.
“The position of the Council of Europe on death penalty is well known: death is not justice, and capital punishment does not deter crime. As a first step towards abolition of the death penalty, the Council of Europe has repeatedly called on Belarusian authorities to impose a moratorium on its use,” the spokesperson said.
On Tuesday, after Lukashenko announced that Belarus will hold a referendum on a new constitution in February, a meeting of the constitutional commission was held in Minsk with the participation of the president to consider a number of controversial issues related to the adoption of the new basic law.
The question of maintaining or abolishing execution in the country was one such issue on which the constitutional commission did not reach a consensus, and decided to bring it to the president.