France and the Death Penalty


Abolition of the Death Penalty in France

The death penalty in France was abolished under the Act of 9 October 1981, which was born of the commitment of Robert Badinter, Minister of Justice at the time, and his speech before the National Assembly (in French). This Act was a step forward in France’s long-standing campaign to promote human dignity. Under French law, it is forbidden to remove people to a country where they would face the death penalty.

The abolition of the death penalty was incorporated into the Constitution of the Fifth Republic by the Constitutional Act of 23 February 2007. The Constitution now stipulates, in Article66-1, that “no one shall be sentenced to death”.

France has adhered to all international commitments on abolition of the death penalty :

Updated: 2 October 2018