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Seychelles asks for reconsideration following sentencing of 3 Seychellois nationals to death for drug trafficking

Seychelles asks for reconsideration following sentencing of 3 Seychellois nationals to death for drug trafficking ( Following information that three Seychellois nationals convicted on charges of drug trafficking in Egypt yesterday have been sentenced to death by execution, the government of Seychelles has appealed to the government of Egypt to commute their sentences to life imprisonment, this in a strong condemnation of the death penalty.

The island’s Home Affairs and Transport Minister, Joel Morgan, has stated that the government and people of Seychelles are shocked and dismayed by the court decision and that the government has asked the Seychelles’ Foreign Affairs Minister, Jean-Paul Adam, currently attending an African Union Ministerial meeting in Addis Ababa, to meet with his Egyptian counter-part to make an appeal for clemency.

“The death sentence has long been abolished from our laws, and we are respectfully appealing to the Egyptian government to allow the men in question to serve out their time in prison. We, as a nation are strongly opposed to capital punishment,” said Minister Morgan.

“The Seychelles government respects the rule of law and legal prerogatives of Egypt, as well as the sovereignty of their nation, but we have humbly asked that the sentence be commuted to life imprisonment. We have made a case to the Egyptian government,” explained Minister Adam.

Minister Adam added that the Seychelles Foreign Ministry would continue to be available to the men and their families for consular assistance where possible.
The Seychellois convicted were part of a crew onboard a ship that was detained and apprehended on April 22, 2011 after it, according to reports, entered Egyptian waters illegally. Acting on information that the ship was bringing in an amount of illicit drugs from Pakistan, the ship was monitored and stopped.

It is understood that the conviction will be appealed through the Egyptian legal system, this while the Seychelles government also undertakes diplomatic efforts for clemency for the three Seychellois.


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