Keir Starmer visits Taiwan to lobby against death penalty

Labour frontbencher, a long-time campaigner against capital punishment, will meet senior judiciary and politicians

The Guardian
Date: 29 Sep 2018
By: Owen BowcottLegal affairs correspondent

Sir Keir Starmer, the shadow Brexit secretary, flies out to Taiwan this weekend to

Keir Starmer: ‘Going to Taiwan is part of maintaining the UK’s commitment to international human rights.’ Photograph: Will Oliver/EPA

lobby against the death penalty in an initiative also aimed at demonstrating the UK’s continued commitment to international legal standards following the EU referendum.

His four-day trip, which is supported by the Foreign Office, will include meetings with the country’s vice-president, minister of justice and senior judiciary. There are more than 40 prisoners on death row in the republic.

Starmer, who was formerly director of public prosecutions, has for many years been a director of the Death Penalty Project, which campaigns for abolition of capital punishment across the world.

According to Amnesty International’s latest estimates, 142 countries have stopped imposing capital punishment in law and practice out of more than 190 states globally. Asia remains one region where the death penalty is still widely used.

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