Vigil tonight at US embassy in London ahead of scheduled Troy Davis execution
- ‘Too Much Doubt’ campaigners will assemble outside embassy from 10pm
- Bianca Jagger and Amnesty UK director Kate Allen will lead candle-lit event
Bianca Jagger, the Council of Europe’s Goodwill Ambassador on the Death Penalty, and the Director of Amnesty International UK Kate Allen, will lead a vigil outside the US embassy in London tonight ahead of the scheduled execution of Troy Davis in the USA. Troy Davis, 42, is facing execution at midnight tonight (7pm US time) in the state of Georgia despite longstanding doubts about the safety of his conviction. He has been on death row since being convicted in 1991 of the killing of a policeman Mark Allen MacPhail, who was shot in Savannah, Georgia in 1989. Davis has always protested his innocence and there is no physical evidence linking him to the crime. Since his trial seven out of nine prosecution witnesses have recanted or changed their initial testimonies in sworn affidavits. As part of Amnesty’s “Too Much Doubt” campaign, more than one million people worldwide have signed an Amnesty petition calling for the authorities to ensure that Davis is not executed - since yesterday afternoon, 40,000 people have sent messages from the UK Amnesty website alone. Meanwhile, prominent Twitter users like Stephen Fry have tweeted their concerns about the case and musicians like Keane’s Richard Hughes (who visited Davis on death row in 2009) have urged their fans to join the campaign to prevent the execution.
Who: Bianca Jagger, Council of Europe’s Goodwill Ambassador: Kate Allen, Amnesty International UK Director; Richard Hughes (Keane)
- What: Candle-lit vigil for Troy Davis , and opportunity for interviews and photographs
- When: from 10pm, Wednesday 21 September
- Where: Embassy of the United States, 24 Grosvenor Square, London W1A 2LQ
- More information about the event /li>
- In 2007 Amnesty published a report detailing a pattern of police coercion of witnesses ahead of Davis’ trial.
- Troy Davis’ execution is opposed by Nobel laureates Jimmy Carter, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Jose Ramos Horta, and the former FBI director William Sessions has also made clear his opposition to the execution.
- Last year the USA executed 46 death row inmates, a lower figure than in recent years, but still the fifth highest number of any country in the world.
- Since 1973, 138 inmates have been released from death rows in the USA on the grounds of innocence.