- Capital punishment
This chapter explores the expanding concept of the right to life in the inter-American system, moving from the basic duty not to take life, to the duty to protect vulnerable groups and avoid foreseeable risks to life, to the duty to take regular measures to preserve life, and finally to the Inter-American Court’s doctrine regarding states’ duty to guarantee those within their jurisdictions access to the conditions that make possible a dignified life. It also examines the System’s death penalty jurisprudence, emphasizing the existing limits on this form of punishment, state obligations regarding due process and other guarantees, and the recent trends in domestic limitations on its use. It focuses on the case of Trinidad and Tobago, which withdrew its ratification of the American Convention due largely to societal support for the death penalty. Finally, the chapter considers the issue of abortion.
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