World Abolitionists to Meet in Geneva

Posted by Elizabeth Zitrin, International Coordinator on February 9th, 2010

The Fourth World Congress Against the Death Penalty will be held in Geneva, Switzerland, in two weeks. Over 1000 people will attend as abolitionists from around the world meet to discuss our work, improve our strategies, learn from each other and plan for universal abolition. Our US participants will join activists from both abolitionist and retentionist nations in 10 round-table panel discussions, 10 workshops for enhancement and development of campaigning skills and two plenary sessions.

Round table sessions will include issues of real importance to the US movement, including racial bias, law enforcement, competent counsel, victims families and the mentally ill. Moderators and speakers in those panels include US experts. I will moderate the session on Law Enforcement Views, a subject very important as we move ahead with our outreach to the law enforcement community.

High ranking officials of Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs), including the UN, the European Union and the Council of Europe will attend.  President Zapatero of Spain, currently the President of the EU, will open the Congress.  DPF honoree, Representative Gail Chasey, the author of the New Mexico abolition bill, will join a plenary session.

The entire Congress Program  is on the Congress website.  You can download the Press Pack too.  The history of the movement and the Congresses is all there.

The World Coalition Against the Death Penalty, where I represent DPF, is a partner with the primary Congress organizer, Ensemble Contre la Peine de Mort (ECPM), Together Against the Death Penalty, and we have been working for over a year on the Congress program.

The US abolition movement will be very well represented. I will be joined by many of our colleagues in the abolition movement, including DPF Board member Speedy Rice and DPF friends Professor Michael Radelet and Sister Helen Prejean, as well as Rep. Gail Chasey, Professor Sandra Babcock, Juan Matos de Juan of the Puerto Rico Bar Association, New Hampshire Representative Renny Cushing of MVFHR, and many others.

Elizabeth Zitrin is Coordinator of DPF's International Outreach and Communications Project.

Posted in Blog, International


Comments are now closed for this item.

  1. Comment by Stefanie, Feb 10th, 2010 11:59am

    This should be a great conference. I hope others can attend too.


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