AMERICA/PERU - Statement of the Bishops on death penalty: "Today it is unacceptable"

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 bishops   episcopal conferences   violence   politics  

Lima (Agenzia Fides) - "Human life is a gift from God, and therefore we are obliged to respect and protect it from the first moment of conception until its natural end", reads the first lines of the communiqué of the Permanent Council of the Peruvian Bishops' Conference of April 26, which affirms the position of the Catholic Church on death penalty, an issue raised in the electoral debate in recent days. In the message, sent to Fides, the Bishops state that "the Church recognizes the right and duty of the public authority to impose penalties commensurate with the gravity of the crime, without excluding, in cases of extreme gravity, the use of the death penalty".
However cases in which "the execution of the convicted is an absolute necessity are very rare, if not practically nonexistent". The Bishops conclude by recalling the words of Pope Francis:
"Today death penalty is unacceptable ... all Christians and people of good will are obliged not only to fight for the abolition of the death penalty, legal or not, but to try to improve prison conditions, in respect of the human dignity of prisoners". (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 27/04/2016)