Process exists for special pardon of death row inmates: minister
CNATAIPEI -- Justice Minister Tseng Yung-fu said yesterday that a system is in place in Taiwan to handle special pardons for death row inmates, amid questions over whether the issue was properly addressed before the execution of six people on Dec. 21.
January 10, 2013, 12:04 am TWN
Briefing a legislative committee on human rights issues, Tseng said that when a death row inmate requests a special pardon, it is sent to the Presidential Office.
If the special pardon is then granted, the office notifies the ministry to take the necessary action, Tseng told lawmakers.
The ministry has not received any notification of a special pardon since resuming executions in 2010, however, and it had to execute six death row inmates last month according to the law, Tseng said.
Opposition Democratic Progressive Party Legislators Tuan Yi-kang and Yu Mei-nu said that under two United Nations human rights covenants, enacted by Taiwan in 2009, death row inmates have the right to ask for a special pardon or a commutation of their sentence.