Five million signatures against the death penalty were presented to Srgian Kerim, president of the 62nd general assembly of the United Nations Organisation on Friday, in New York by a delegation of the Sant’Egidio community and the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty.
The petition, signed by people from around the world, demands a universal moratorium for capital punishment. The text of the Sant’Egidio appeal was adopted by the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty on 10 October.
The delegation led by Sant’Egidio spokesman Mario Marazziti, included Sr Helen Prejean, American anti death penalty activist, and representatives of other organisations which promote the abolition of the death penalty.
The presentation of the signatures was followed by a video press conference, at which speakers included Archbishop Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury Adolfo Perez Esquivel, Nobel Peace Prize winner from Buenos Aires; Cardinal Renato Raffaele Martino, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace; and Siti Musdah Mulia, Muslim theologian of Djakharta University.
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