Summary: 4 March 2011, Brussels - Catherine Ashton, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the Commission, made today the following statement the executions in Taiwan:
"I deeply regret today's executions in Taiwan, the first after the resumption of executions in Taiwan last year. The European Union had been encouraged by the de facto moratorium on executions that had been in place from 2006 until last year. Taiwan is now once again one of the very few industrial democracies to implement capital punishment.
The European Union's strongly held view in favor of the abolition of capital punishment is well known. The European Union considers that the abolition of the death penalty contributes to the enhancement of human dignity and the progressive development of human rights. It is the European Union's view that the death penalty does not serve as an effective deterrent, and that any miscarriage of justice, which is inevitable in any legal system, would be irreversible.
I therefore urge Taiwan not to undertake further executions, but instead to put in place an immediate de facto moratorium on executions, pending legal abolition."