The Death Penalty
One of the critical aspects of human rights activism is abolishing the death penalty. Capital punishment is the state-sanctioned killing of citizens who have been convicted of serious offences. The most common ones tend to be murder and treason. Throughout much of human history, the death penalty was an accepted practice. However, in recent decades there has been a big push towards enforcing more humane punishment methods.
Throughout the world, a number of nations still have the death penalty for certain crimes. This includes the US, China, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Egypt and Iran. Currently, over fifty separate countries utilise capital punishment as a deterrent. However, 108 other states have decided to altogether abolish it. More than half of the entire population of the world lives in places where the death penalty is enforced.
It is a highly controversial topic and the core reason why many people choose to become human rights activists. The views of capital punishment will vary greatly depending on each individual culture and ideology of a region. The Council of Europe is one of the leading organisations seeking to end it. In recent years the United Nations has also called for an international moratorium on executions.