Executive orders for the execution of 80 persons have recently been announced in Iraq, with further possible execution orders to follow. This is a regrettable development as, following the formation of a new Government in Iraq in 2014, a review of all pending cases was undertaken. This review and a possible permanent suspension of all executions had been seen as a positive signal by the EU, in line with its principled opposition to the use of the death penalty.
Capital punishment is counter-productive as a crime deterrent. The EU strongly encourages Iraq to reinstate a de facto moratorium on the death penalty.