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EU condemns first federal execution of woman in US in 67 years

EU condemns first federal execution of woman in US in 67 years

dpa
Washington/Brussels
The European Union on Wednesday condemned the first execution of a woman on a federal death row in the United States since 1953, after last-minute appeals were rejected by the Supreme Court.
Convicted murderer Lisa Montgomery, 52, failed in her attempt to halt her execution by being found mentally unfit, and was given a lethal injection in the state of Indiana overnight, US media reported.
“The European Union deeply regrets the execution at a federal level in the United States of the first woman in almost seven decades,” EU foreign affairs spokesperson Peter Stano said in a statement.
“The EU had called for clemency to be granted to Lisa Montgomery taking into consideration international law and internationally accepted minimum standards that should be respected regarding people with mental disorders,” he said.
Montgomery was convicted in 2007 of murder and kidnapping after strangling a pregnant woman and cutting her unborn baby out of her body in 2003.
A last-minute appeal by her lawyers was rejected in two decisions by the US Supreme Court, and she was killed in prison hours later.
The outgoing administration of President Donald Trump has sought a slew of executions in the weeks before President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration - a move the EU urged the outgoing US government to halt.
“The EU calls on the US administration to reverse its decision to carry out the remaining federal-level executions during the last days of the current administration,” Stano said.
“The EU stands firmly and unequivocally by the victims of crime and their families and effectively prosecutes criminals in its territory,” he said. “But capital punishment is incompatible with human dignity and the right to life, constitutes an inhuman and degrading treatment, and does not have any proven deterrent effect.” While many US states enforce the death penalty there had been a 17-year pause on federal executions until July of this year.
Biden, a Democrat, rejects the death penalty and could halt all federal executions. Trump, a Republican, has enforced the reintroduction of executions at the federal level.

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