Mexicans Eye Death Penalty to Stem Drug Murders

Politicians consider reinstating capital punishment to stave off tide of violence
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 23, 2009 6:26 AM CST
Police officers guard a crime scene where a woman was murdered in Tijuana, Mexico. A wave of killings and kidnappings has prompted calls to bring back the death penalty.   (AP Photo/Guillermo Arias)
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(Newser) – Mexican lawmakers are considering bringing back the death penalty in the wake of an overwhelming tide of murders and kidnappings linked to drug cartels, reports the BBC. The Green Party, usually a staunch foe of capital punishment, is leading the campaign to reinstate it. Surveys show 70% of Mexicans want murderers executed. 

Since abolishing the death penalty in 2005, Mexico has become a powerful voice on the international stage calling for other nations to abandon capital punishment. No one has been executed in the country since 1961. The government, Catholic Church and human rights groups strongly oppose reinstatement.