UPA (Utanian Press Agency)
Release: July 18th, 301 AP.

Savaj Emperor says death penalty important to Savaj traditions

The campaign against the Nystonian death penalty has been dealt a near-fatal blow when the
Savaj Emperor declared the "importance of the Savaj Code of Justice" which includes the
death penalty.

Undoubtedly inspired into action by the Imperial Court, who visibly cringed when a foreign
Royal -- King Edward II of Christiana -- called on all nations to follow the lead of his
country and abolish the death penalty, the Emperor has issued a statement to his "loyal
brothers and friends" restating the importance of Savaj justice codes to the future
success of the Savaj Empire.

The Savaj Code of Justice stated that a guilty party should be given a second chance after
repenting of their crimes, and "marked as was Cain" so that no one would seek revenge on
a repentant person. However, should that person continue an "immoral life", they could be
executed by the local judges authority, having already received "one chance".

It was a formula applied to a famous gangster and bank robber from Nystonia in the 230s
who disappeared in 234, and was later found as an old man in the 60s by a reporter deep in
the mountainous region of Savana state. He had part of an ear removed as his "mark", and
lived a crimeless life thereafter, a Cruistian convert living in a remote monestry.

The Savaj Emperor still holds enormous influence amongst the majority Utani people of
Utania. The Savaj Empire ruled Utania for over 700 years until the plague 300 years ago,
and was a period of enormous cultural and scientific progress. It brought about an Utani
renaissance that many Utani still hark back to as the "golden age", and unified the Utani
people after thousands of years of internecine wars.

Utani are therefore divided as to the future role of the Emperor and his spiritual-not-
temporal Empire. progressives, such as billionaire entrepreneur James Angorit, say the
Utani people have the foundation of their future from the Empire and faith, but must move
forward into the modern age, not hark back to their simpler agrarian lives of old.
Royalists claim the Empire and its traditions are "essential" to preserving the Utani
people and thus the Utanian nation. More moderate Utani nationalists say the spirit of
the Empire must be retained, but that the Emperor should have "limited temporal power".

These factions in the Utani people exist within the Utani Saedaj Party, and would sabotage
any attempt by the Peoples party to use federal Parliament to overrule the Nystonian
Parliament and abolish the death penalty. While the proponents of the ban might collect
votes in Parliament from the Utani Progressive Party, the Democrats, some Conservatives
and others in opposition, it would likely lose the support of numerous Utani Saedaj MPs
who will follow the Emperor's political advice in this "restatement". The same
circumstances brought the death penalty to Nystonia state in the first place, with Utani
Saedaj MPs voting with the death penalty-supporting government of Governor Cryer.

While death penalty campaigners knew they would lose some Utani Saedaj MPs' vote, they
did not know the number of MPs who would vote against a ban, and suspected it might be a
small number. Now that the Emperor has stated his support for the ultimate penalty to
continue to exist, many Peoples Party Utani MPs will feel pressured to oppose the ban as
well.

The President and Prime Minister have to-date resisted any attempts to bring the issue to
debate in the Parliament because they see it as self-destructive on an already marginal
government. This will be doubly-so now that the government is a minority government.
Instead, Solomon-like political wisdom and skills will be required to bring about a ban
without contradicting the Emperor's statement today.

It is worth noting that the Savaj Code of Justice dictates that the death penalty should
be enacted within days of a guilty verdict in a court case, not the months or years of
modern death penalty cases. It also allows a Judge to afford the accused "yet another
opportunity" to repent of their sins. A judge might also use banishment if the guilty
refuses the "path of repentance". The code was one of the key advances in Utani
civilisation.


©UPA, 301 AP.

<TECH>
©Mike Ham, 2001. All rights reserved. No reproduction without, at least, tacit approval. ;-)