That's the title of Elisabetta Zamparutti's commentary posted at Inter Press Service. She is a member of the Italian parliament and treasurer ofthe international abolition organization Hands Off Cain. Here's the beginning:
On Dec. 18, 2007, the approval of a resolution for a moratorium on executions by the United Nations General Assembly was hailed as a milestone in the struggle to abolish the death penalty worldwide. It is true that the United Nations may not impose the abolition of the death penalty, but the moral and political value of the resolution is undeniable.
Since the founding of the abolitionist organisation Hands Off Cain in 1993, 56 of the 97 retentionist States that were members of the U.N. at that time have abandoned the practice of the death penalty. Fifteen of them have done so since 2006, the year following the re-launching of the initiative at the U.N. General Assembly. Three more countries (Palau, East-Timor and Tuvalu) that became members of the U.N. after 1993 are also abolitionist.
On the eve of the fourth U.N. General Assembly vote on the death penalty resolution, expected later this year, it is important to review the current situation.
There are 154 countries and territories that, to varying degrees, have decided to renounce the death penalty. Of these: 100 are totally abolitionist, seven are abolitionist for ordinary crimes, five have a moratorium on executions in place and 42 are de facto abolitionist (i.e. countries that have not carried out any executions for at least 10 years or countries that have binding obligations not to use the death penalty). On the other hand, there are 44 retentionist countries.
There were 19 countries that carried out executions in 2011, compared to 27 countries in 2006.