Secretary-General welcomes US decision on early release of 6,000 prisoners
Oct.8, New York: United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the decision by the United States Government to release 6,000 inmates from federal penitentiaries in an effort to ease overcrowding in prisons and provide a degree of redress for persons who received disproportionately long sentences for non-violent drug-related offences.
“In order to address over-incarceration and overcrowding and their human rights implications, some States should develop and implement alternatives to custodial measures, and review penal policies and legislation to ensure proportionate sentencing,” said a statement issued by Ban’s spokesperson in New York.
He also welcomes proposals that aim to consider early release of additional prisoners who are serving sentences disproportionate to their crimes, many of which are drug-related.
The Secretary-General also said that States should only apply deprivation of liberty as a measure of last resort and only after alternatives have been duly considered.
Consideration needs to be given to alternatives to criminalization and incarceration of people who use drugs, with an increased focus on public health, prevention, treatment and care, he said in the statement.
The Oslo Times