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Friday, January 11, 2013 - 05.18 GMT

EU expresses dismay at the execution of Rizana


The European Union yesterday expressed its dismay at the execution of the Sri Lankan housemaid Rizana Nafeek by the Saudi Arabian authorities on Wednesday despite numerous pleas to spare her life.

The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the Commission Catherine Ashton issuing a statement said she is deeply dismayed by the execution of Ms. Nafeek.

"I am deeply dismayed by the information that Sri Lankan national Ms. Rizana Nafeek was executed today in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," the EU official said.

"On numerous occasions, the EU had called for the execution to be commuted and had asked the authorities to exercise all their powers in order to grant her relief from the death penalty. Ms Rizana Nafeek was most probably a minor at the time of the crime," the statement added.

"I recognise the serious nature of the crime involved and express my sincere sympathy to the family of the victim. However, I do not believe that their loss has been mitigated by Ms. Nafeek's death."

The High Representative said the EU opposes the use of capital punishment in all cases and under all circumstances and calls for a global moratorium as a first step towards its universal abolition.

"Capital punishment represents an irreversible loss of human life," the statement noted.





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Last modified: January 11, 2013.

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