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‘A Short Film About Killing’: The movie that brought an end to the Polish death penalty

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The most intellectually challenging film I have ever seen about capital punishment. Definitely a must-see. DPN review and YouTube trailer available in our 'Films & Documentaries' section — DPN editor As far as European cinema goes, there are few figures quite admired in critical circles as the inimitable Krzysztof Kieślowski. Known for his Dekalog series of 1989, as well as The Double Life of Veronique and the Three Colours trilogy, Kieślowski embodied everything so extraordinary about the power of European cinema and that of his native Poland in turn.

Pakistan | 6,000 await execution in nationwide jails

Pakistan holds one of the largest death rows globally

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan holds one of the largest death rows globally, with 6,039 prisoners awaiting execution nationwide, concentrated primarily in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces. 

Among them, 99% are male, while 62 are women.

In a significant event attended by public figures, policymakers, international ambassadors, and representatives of global organizations, the Justice Project Pakistan (JPP), in collaboration with the Embassy of France in Pakistan, premiered a short film titled 'Unfathomable.' This film is the first in a series shedding light on the lives of death row prisoners in Pakistan.

Sixty-seven judges from the Federal Judicial Academy, along with representatives of foreign missions, institutions, and NGOs involved in the promotion of human rights, also attended the event.

French Ambassador to Pakistan Nicolas Galey said, "As for the supposed deterrent nature of capital punishment, it is an illusion and a lie, demonstrated by so many international statistics."

JPP Executive Director Sarah Belal remarked that every country’s journey towards compliance with international standards on the death penalty is tethered to its own sociocultural context.

"The most important yet often overlooked step is understanding the contextual landscape within which executions have historically taken place in the country," she said.

Directed by Sikander-Vincent Khan, the film delves into the hardships and injustices faced by Pakistani death row prisoners throughout their lives, from childhood labor and hazardous work environments to mental illness and dire poverty. It also highlights the challenges within the criminal justice system, both during trials and on death row.

Every year, the JPP publishes an annual statistics report, "Death Penalty in Pakistan: Data Mapping Capital Punishment," analyzing current trends in Pakistan's criminal justice system.

The JPP is a legal action non-governmental organization dedicated to representing the most vulnerable Pakistani prisoners facing the harshest punishments, including those facing the death penalty, mentally ill prisoners, victims of police torture, juvenile prisoners, and overseas Pakistani prisoners.

Formed in Lahore in December 2009, the JPP investigates, advocates, educates, and litigates, building public and political support as well as legal precedents that will lead to systemic reform of the criminal justice system in Pakistan.

Its work combines strategic litigation, fierce domestic and international public and policy advocacy campaigns, and building the capacity of stakeholders who can improve the representation and treatment of individuals facing capital punishment in Pakistan and abroad.

Source: tribune.com.pk, Staff, February 6, 2024

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