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Walid Slaïby, a prominent abolitionist figure, dies at 68

Walid Slaïby, a leading figure in Lebanese civil society and the abolitionist movement, passed away on Wednesday, May 3. ECPM expresses its support to his family and joins them in their grief. Walid Slaïby and Ogarit Younan, his wife, were nominated for the Grand Prix Robert Badinter awarded by the public at the 8th World Congress against the Death Penalty in November 2022, for their commitment against the death penalty in Lebanon. Together, they were also laureates of the 2022 Gandhi Peace Prize, awarded by the Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation.
Walid Slaïby and Ogarit Younan

Walid Slaïby and Ogarit Younan’s fight for non-violence

Walid Slaïby and Ogarit Younan are writers, researchers, co-founders of the Lebanese Association for Civil Rights (LACR), and pioneers of the non-violent movement in the Arab world. In 1997, they published a major study on the death penalty in Lebanon, and co-founded the National Campaign to Abolish the Death Penalty in Lebanon, along with other prominent activists, including Father Hadi-el-Aya. Through LACR, Ogarit and Walid have worked with ECPM and the World Coalition against the Death Penalty since their creation. In 2001, the publication of a survey they conducted into parliamentarians’ views on abolition led to major legislative reform. The pair aim to build resistance through cooperation, advocacy, knowledge, institutions and cooperation. “Education, awareness, and discussion pave the way” to abolition, according to Ogarit. To this end, they founded the first University for Non-Violence worldwide (AUNOHR) in 2009, and were at the initiative, together with ECPM, of the Teaching Abolition International Network in 2014.

“Walid Slaïby was a star of light in a world of darkness and madness.”

Raphaël Chenuil-Hazan, ECPM director

A great pioneer in the fight against the death penalty, Walid Slaïby will leave non-violent values to the abolitionist Lebanese civil society as a legacy.