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Report No. 35

Topic Number 11

Abolition in Asia

60. Abolition in Asia.-

In a few countries of Asia, the abolition or limitation of capital punishment has been formally considered.

61. In Ceylon, capital punishment was suspended by the Suspension of Capital Punishment Act (20 of 1958) for 3 years. (The period of suspension was subject to further extension by resolution).

(In May 1958, death penalty was temporarily prescribed for certain offences against property). The question of restoration was considered1 by a Commission of Inquiry2.

The majority of the Ceylon Commission was opposed to restoration of the capital punishment. But it was restored3, by the Suspension of Capital Punishment (Repeal) Act (Ceylon Act 25 of 1959), assented to on the 2nd December, 1959.

1. Report of the Ceylon Commission of Inquiry on Capital Punishment Sessional Paper XIV-1959, published on 14th September, 1959.

2. The Commission was constituted of Professor Norval Morris (Chairman, Sir Edwin Wijeyeratne K.B.E. Bar-at-Law, and Professor T. Nadaraja (Members).

3. See comparative material, in this Report.

62. In Japan, it is understood, proposals are under consideration to limit the death penalty to a lesser number of offences than at present1.

1. See "A Preparatory Draft for the Revised Penal Code of Japan, 1961, (Ministry of Justice) (Japan) (1963), p. 17 of the Introduction, and Draft sections 192, 204, 213, as compared with the existing Penal Code of Japan, sections 108, 119, 126.

63. In Burma, the Penal Code (i.e., the Indian Penal Code which is still in force there) has been amended so as to limit the death penalty (so far as homicide is concerned) to only certain categories of murders1.

1. See comparative material.

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