Screengrab of Egypt's Ambassador Amr Ramadan as he takes the floor during the United Nations Human Rights Council's 42nd plenary meeting of the 28th session on Friday, March 20, 2015 (Photo: Aswat Masriya)
Egypt's UN Human Rights Council member Amr Ramadan issued a statement Saturday objecting to a proposal made by several European countries seeking to abolish internationally the death penalty.
Ramadan raised concern over pressure exerted by several countries using economic sanctions or aid withdrawal to pressure developing countries regarding the use of the death penalty, describing such moves as "unethical," according to Egypt's state-owned MENA news agency.
Ramadan underlined that Egypt respects the decision of some countries to end the use of the death penalty and urged them to show equal mutual respect regarding Egypt's decision not to.
He added that any decision regarding the death penalty can only follow an internal national debate that takes into consideration cultural, political, religious and economic aspects, which differ from one country to another.
A resolution on the question of the death penalty was adopted Thursday by a vote of 26 in favour, 13 against and eight abstentions.
In the resolution, it is stated: "The Council calls upon States that have not yet acceded to or ratified the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to consider doing so."
Egypt is among 37 countries in the UN System that still enforce the death penalty. Others also include the United States, China and Saudi Arabia.