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No plans to end capital punishment: Justice Minister

No plans to end capital punishment: Justice Minister

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The government is not planning to abolish capital punishment after the death of an eight-year-old girl, Justice Minister Lo Ying-shay said Tuesday.
An intruder attacked a second-grade pupil with a knife at the Taipei Municipal Wenhua Elementary School in the district of Beitou last Friday, resulting in the girl’s death the following day.
The vicious attack renewed the debate about capital punishment, which has received strong support in opinion polls.
Asked about the issue Tuesday morning, Lo said she believed many people agreed that prosecutors should ask for the death sentence for the suspect, 29-year-old Kung Chung-an, a former pupil at the same school.
Reporters asked whether the suspect would be able to receive a lighter sentence because he reportedly phoned in his crime, but Lo said this was not automatic. The judge might still rule that because the crime was so horrific, there was no reason for mercy, the minister said.
President Ma Ying-jeou and his administration have come under fire for apparently trying to push the country in the direction of abolition of the death penalty. The approval of human rights-related United Nations conventions has also been seen as a move away from capital punishment.
However, public opinion has been strongly in favor of continuing to hold executions, and only a handful of mostly Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers have spoken out in favor of abolition, a view shared by activist groups including mostly lawyers and human rights activists.


Updated : 2021-09-19 20:12 GMT+08:00