The United Kingdom has warned Sri Lanka of the consequences if the death penalty is implemented.
The UK Foreign Office said that implementation of the death penalty will inevitably make it more difficult for the UK to cooperate with Sri Lanka on law enforcement issues, including on counter terrorism, and will require the UK to review technical assistance programmes on relevant policing, defence and other security issues.
President Maithripala Sirisena had said yesterday that four convicts on death row will be executed soon.
He told media heads that he has signed the papers to execute the four convicts who have been sentenced to death on drug related offences.
“We are deeply concerned at reports that Sri Lanka intends to abandon its long-standing moratorium on use of the death penalty. The UK opposes the use of the death penalty in all circumstances as a matter of principle,” the UK Foreign Office said.
Sri Lanka voted in favour of a global moratorium on the use of the death penalty at the UN General Assembly just six months ago.
The UK Foreign Office said that a reversal of this policy would be a regressive step that would harm Sri Lanka’s international standing and its reputation as a tourist destination and growing centre for business.
The Foreign Office said that the UK has raised its concerns at the highest levels of the Sri Lankan Government and continue to call on Sri Lanka to maintain its moratorium on the death penalty. (Colombo Gazette)