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Advance questions and statement to Singapore

Advance questions:

  1. We take note of legal amendments in 2012 giving courts discretion to apply life imprisonment in lieu of the death penalty in certain defined situations. Will Singapore consider joining the trend towards the abolition of the death penalty by a de facto or de jure moratorium?
  2. We appreciate that social acceptance of homosexuality seems to be growing in Singapore, and that section 377 A of the Penal Code is not proactively enforced. As a result, the dignity and freedom of individuals belonging to the LGBT community is slowly growing. The retention of section 377A does however strongly signal against a pluralistic and inclusive Singapore for all. Under which conditions will Singapore consider revoking section 377A?
  3. Norway attaches considerable importance to the work of the UN Special Procedures. Singapore has pending requests for a country visit from the Special Rapporteur on the rights to peaceful assembly and association, and the Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights. Will Singapore welcome these Special Rapporteurs? 

Statement:

Norway welcomes the delegation from Singapore. We congratulate Singapore on its first 50 years of independence and recognize the remarkable social and economic progress made in this period, bringing Singapore high up on the UN Human Development Index.

Pluralism, tolerance, openness and good governance are important parts of Singapore’s success as a global city-state. We would encourage more concrete measures to protect the human rights of sexual minorities, and specifically recommend the abolishment of Penal Code Section 377A.

Norway opposes the use of the death penalty and believes it undermines human dignity. While noting that amendments were made by Singapore in 2012 to allow courts discretion to apply life imprisonment in lieu of the death penalty in certain defined situations, we are concerned that executions resumed in 2014 and 2015.

We recommend Singapore to establish a moratorium on executions with a view to abolishing the death penalty.