Sri Lanka plans to enforce the death penalty again in the fight against drug-related crime within the next two months. Head of state Maithripala Sirisena told Parliament on Wednesday that he hoped to see the first drug criminal “hanged in a month or two”. The president appealed to human rights organizations to refrain from putting pressure on him because of the decision.
Since 1976, death sentences in the island nation were no longer enforced, but commuted to life imprisonment.
After a visit to the Philippines in January, Sirisena described the tough anti-drug struggle of his counterpart President Rodrigo Duterte as exemplary.
Since taking office in 2016, the Philippine police have killed more than 4,200 suspected drug criminals.
Sri Lankan Justice Minister Thalatha Athukorale said on Tuesday that the documents for the execution of five drug criminals had been prepared.
It only lacks the signature of the head of state. Human rights organizations are calling on Sri Lanka authorities to renounce capital punishment.