Broken Beyond Repair

The death penalty is the ultimate, irreversible denial of human rights. It violates the right to life as proclaimed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the right to be free from cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.

The death penalty is also a broken system that is too flawed to fix. In the United States and across the globe, the death penalty has been shown to be applied disproportionally against racial and ethnic minorities, the poor, and people with mental illness or intellectual disability. There is no evidence that the death penalty has any deterring effect or improves public safety at all. In the United States, repeated studies have shown that the death penalty costs far more public funds than alternative punishments.

Over two-thirds of the countries in the world – 140 – have now abolished the death penalty in law or practice.  In the U.S., 18 states plus the District of Columbia have abolished the death penalty, and 7 more have not carried out an execution in at least 10 years. More and more states are learning that the death penalty is broken beyond repair.

Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases without exception regardless of the nature of the crime, the characteristics of the offender, or the method used by the state to kill the prisoner.

Death Penalty Updates
Troy was on death row for over two decades before he was finally executed. In that time he became a leader himself in the movement to end the death penalty, with his steadfast spirit and unshakeable f...

On 19 August, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals granted a stay of execution to Jeffery Wood, who was scheduled to be executed in Texas on 24 August. He was sentenced to death in 1998 for a murder...


International protection of human rights is in danger of unravelling as short-term national self-interest and draconian security crackdowns have led to a wholesale assault on basic freedoms and rig...