‘Parties which supported Common Candidate oppose death penalty’ | Daily News

‘Parties which supported Common Candidate oppose death penalty’

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe at the meeting with foreign ambassadors yesterday.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe at the meeting with foreign ambassadors yesterday.

Most parties that supported the Common Candidate at the 2015 Presidential Election oppose the implementation of the death penalty, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told a group of foreign ambassadors yesterday.

The foreign envoys met the Prime Minister to express their concerns over President Maithripala Sirisena’s decision to implement the death penalty.

The Premier explained to the ambassadors that the UNP, JVP and TNA are against ending the 43-year-old moratorium on the death penalty, and even the Opposition led by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has been vocal against it.

Prime Minister Wickremesinghe said he would discuss this matter with the Cabinet of Ministers, and then with President Sirisena and Speaker Karu Jayasuriya.

He told the envoys that Sri Lanka had voted in favour of the UN resolution on the moratorium on the use of the death penalty in 2016 and again in 2018.

“President Sirisena was the President and I was the Prime Minister when Sri Lanka voted in favour of the moratorium on the death penalty in 2016. When it was reaffirmed on December 17, 2018, President Sirisena was the President and Mahinda Rajapaksa was the Prime Minister,” he observed.

The Premier recalled that former President J.R. Jayewardene decided to stop implementing the death penalty and his successors, Ranasinghe Premadasa, D.B. Wijetunga, Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga and Mahinda Rajapaksa continued with that decision.


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