Governments must put an end to the death penalty

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"The death penalty is abhorrent, and we must try and save our countrymen and women from judicial murder overseas".

Communications Minister Gobind Singh Deo on Thursday confirmed the Cabinet's decision.

"The death penalty is a violation of the right to life as proclaimed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Full stop. Since we are abolishing the sentence, all executions should not be carried out", he said.

Liew Vui Keong, minister in the prime minister's office, said Thursday that the paperwork to abolish the death penalty in Malaysia is now in its final stages after the cabinet approved the measure on Wednesday.

Liew, who is also in charge of legal affairs told this to reporters after attending the "Law Reform Talk" at Universiti Malaya here, today.

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"The death penalty is barbarous, and unimaginably cruel", N Surendran, an adviser with Lawyers for Liberty, a Malaysian rights group with close ties to the centre-left People's Justice Party, said in a statement.

Liew said the amended law would be put before parliament next Monday.

On this important occasion, the European Union delegation to PNG calls for an end to state-sanctioned capital punishment.

Amnesty International also cheered the news, calling it "an astounding announcement".

The EU delegation to PNG reiterated their stance today, while recognising the World Day against death penalty.

"All death penalty (sic) will be abolished".

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The abolition of the death penalty could save the life of Sydney grandmother Maria Exposto, who was found guilty of drug trafficking by the Court of Appeal of Malaysia in May.

A total of 1,267 prisoners are on death row, making up 2.7 percent of the 60,000-strong prison population.

Amnesty International welcomed the decision and urged other nations in the region to follow suite.

In April past year, Amnesty International ranked Malaysia 10th in the use of death penalty among the 23 countries that carried out capital punishment in 2016.

"Having rejected the death penalty in this country, we now have the moral authority to fight for the lives of our citizens overseas", he said, referring to the hundreds of Malaysians on death row in Singapore and other countries, particularly for being drug mules.

Excluding China, Amnesty says Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Pakistan - in that order - carried out 84 per cent of all executions in 2017.

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