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The European Union condemns in the strongest terms the 29 simultaneous executions which took place in Evin prison, Iran, on Sunday 27 July 2008.
It considers that the Iranian regime's action of staging these executions and making them the focus of media attention is an affront to human dignity.
The European Union remains convinced that capital punishment cannot form the basis of a fair and effective prosecution policy: the dissuasive effect of this penalty has never been proved and any judicial error is irreversible.
The European Union is deeply concerned by the increasing recourse to the death penalty in Iran in recent months. It urges the Iranian authorities to put an end to death sentences and executions, to establish a moratorium with a view to abolishing the death penalty in accordance with the resolution adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 18 December 2007 and to respect international human rights standards for all Iranians.
The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia* and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as the Republic of Moldova align themselves with this declaration.
* Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.