Russian moratorium on death penalty not connected to Russia's membership in Council of Europe, it has no definite term - Federation Council committee head
MOSCOW. March 2 (Interfax) - The moratorium on the death penalty in Russia has no definite term and is not connected to Russia's membership in the Council of Europe, Andrei Klishas, the head of the Federation Council Constitutional Legislation and State-Building Committee, said.
"There are currently at least two decisions of the Constitutional Court that show us that Russia has a special constitutional law regime that prevents the use of the death penalty. This moratorium is termless, and is not connected to our membership in the Council of Europe because Russia is a sovereign state and the Constitutional Court decides independently on all issues associated with public law and order. The use of the death penalty undoubtedly is related to it," the senator told a meeting in the Federation Council on Wednesday.
The issue of the death penalty was raised in the meeting by Senator Lyudmila Narusova, who said Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin had allegedly recently spoken in favor of the use of this punishment.
Klishas, for his part, said that "Zorkin has never said he is for the use of the death penalty."
"The campaign in the mass media that happened in late December - you are apparently talking about that - there was no special statement, it was associated with the publication by the Constitutional Court of a collection of articles, in particular, by the chairman, which was prepared for the 30th anniversary of the Constitutional Court. It stated in detail the position of Valery Dmitriyevich Zorkin on the death penalty, that it is absolutely unacceptable," Klishas said.
"I reiterate, it is unacceptable due to the position of the Constitutional Court. Of course, a judge cannot rule out situations when something will change in the future - that precise phrase is in that article," the senator said.
However, the moratorium now remains in effect, Klishas said.