The European Union welcomes the decision of the State of Colorado to abolish the death penalty. Colorado becomes the 22nd US State to take this important step, while 12 other States have had no executions over the last 10 years. Together, there are 34 US States that, either by law or de facto, do not apply the death penalty. Throughout the United States, executions and new death sentences remain near historic lows.
The decision of the State of Colorado further encourages the growing trend to abandon capital punishment in the United States. This is in line with the trend worldwide, where the number of countries with no executions for at least 10 years has already reached 160.
The death penalty is a cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment and no compelling evidence exists to show that it serves as a deterrent to crime, while any miscarriages of justice are irreversible.
The European Union strongly opposes the death penalty and will continue to work for its abolition in the few remaining countries that still apply it.