In recognition of the 13th World Day against the Death Penalty and ahead of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on drugs, the Open Society Foundations and the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty hosted an event looking at capital punishment in the context of international law and global drug control on the 7th of October.

An international panel of experts discussed the death penalty as it relates to drug offenses in their countries and on a global level and launched a brief report outlining key recommendations on the topic for UN member states to consider leading up to the UNGASS. The event's podcast is now available from this link. 

There are currently thousands of people on death row for drug-related offenses in Asia, the Middle East, and parts of Africa. The international drug control system must share the blame, as treaties promoting strict and severe punishments for drug offenses have opened the door to such responses. UN human rights and drug control bodies now recognize that the death penalty for drugs violates international law, but a number of states parties to the drug control treaties argue that capital drug laws are a permissible sanction.

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