Russia extends death penalty ban


A Russian court has effectively outlawed the death penalty in the country, ruling that a moratorium on capital punishment due to expire in January must remain in force. Valery Zorkin, head of the Constitutional Court, said the ban on executions must be extended until the country ratifies a European convention banning the death penalty. He said the end of the judicial moratorium on January 1 “does not make it possible to apply the death penalty on the whole of Russia’s territory. “This decision is final and may not be appealed,” he said after the ruling on Thursday.