IJSSH 2015 Vol.5(4): 362-367 ISSN: 2010-3646
DOI: 10.7763/IJSSH.2015.V5.481

Human Rights Policy: The Cases of Capital Punishment in Kyrgyzstan and South Korea

Aejung Kim
Abstract—There are significant variations with regard to the use of the death penalty. The paper attempts to identify both environmental and the state elite’s interest explanations for the capital punishment policy development by examining two cases of capital punishment in Kyrgyzstan and South Korea. In Kyrgyzstan, geopolitical situation created through influence of the EU and power struggles after the collapse of the Soviet Union has affected the state elite’s decision making of death penalty policy. Induced by a new geopolitical situation, Kyrgyzstan state leaders adopted the abolition of the death penalty to increase political and financial powers. In South Korea, separation with North Korea, and the Clinton administration’s engagement policy toward North Korea in the early 1990s catalyzed President DJ Kim to meet the needs of radical groups in South Korea. The state elite’s interest to maintain political power led to the adoption of death penalty moratorium. This comparative study shows that various geopolitical environments result in different capital punishment policy outcomes by influencing the state elite’s interests.

Index Terms—Death penalty, geopolitics, human rights policy, intervening variable.

Aejung Kim is with the Kent State University, USA (e-mail: akim4@ kent.edu).

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Cite: Aejung Kim, " Human Rights Policy: The Cases of Capital Punishment in Kyrgyzstan and South Korea," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 5, no. 4, pp. 362-367, 2015.

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