Tunisia: First Death Sentencing Since Revolution

24 février 2012

The Primary Court of Tunis has recently issued capital punishment against the murderer of a teenager, killed in Manouba, March 20th 2011. This sentence is the first since the ousting of Tunisia's former president Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali.

However, reassures Mohamed Saidana, a Tunisian lawyer, “Formally, the judge is supposed to issue the execution sentence whenever he is faced with the crime of murder. However, enforcing the sentence is another issue". Indeed, execution orders must receive the signature of the President of the Republic. And in office President Moncef Marzouki, a recognized human rights activist, has formerly pledged that he would never sign any execution order as Tunisia's president.

As Tunisia strives toward the application of transitional justice, concerns related to human rights have gained heightened precedence. Accordingly, human rights activists have prioritized advocacy efforts toward the abolition of the death penalty. Notably, since a declaration of Amnesty International director, Lotfi Azouz, founder member of the Tunisian Coalition against the death penalty " The death penalty must be abolished in the Tunisian rule of law".