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Sobczak, Krzysztof

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Rzeczpospolita - Poland | 04/08/2006

Protest against Poland's calls to lift the ban on the death penalty

Polish President Lech Kaczynski said a few days ago in a radio interview: "I was, am, and will continue to be in favour of the death penalty." The government coalition parties, the 'League of Polish Families' and 'Self-defence', also have spoken out in favour of the death penalty, banned in Poland since 1988. In a letter to Kaczynski, Rene van der Linden, president of the Council of Europe's parliamentary assembly, protested that the reintroduction of the death penalty was "incompatible with membership in our organisation." Krzysztof Sobczak comments: "Yesterday the European Commission reminded Lech Kaczynski that the death penalty was not compatible with European values and today the Council of Europe has done the same. These reminders are embarrassing for Poland. It's like being reminded that in a civilised world there's no going back once democracy has been established – despite all its shortcomings."

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