October 10th was World Day Against the Death Penalty, an occassion that Amnesty International used to urge abolition of the death penalty in all African states. Amnesty officials noted that recent developments show a trend toward death penalty abolition among African countries, and they stated that the majority of the continent's nations have abandoned using capital punishment. Senegal abolished the death penalty for all crimes in December 2004 and Liberia in September 2005. In March 2005, Kenyan officials announced that they are committed to ending the death penalty and are taking steps to commute all death sentences to life in prison without parole. Benin and Morocco have halted executions, and the Ugandan Constitutional Court recently ended the death penalty for certain crimes. In all, 13 of Africa's 53 states have permanently abolished the death penalty and another 20 countries no longer carry out executions. During World Day events hosted by Amnesty International around the globe, people signed a petition against capital punishment that will be presented to heads of state in Africa.
The World Day Against the Death Penalty is organized by the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty, a group of 38 human rights organizations, local and regional authorities, bar associations, and trade unions.