Closed petition Legally pardon those convicted in Great Britain for offences of witchcraft
The Witchcraft Act 1735 repealed legislation creating offences for witchcraft, recognising that the belief that people could use demonic magic to harm and murder was not a reality. Even though this meant the people convicted and executed under former Acts had been innocent, they were never pardoned.
Witch persecution is still happening. The UN passed a resolution in 2021 calling on countries to deal with the problem. In 2022, the First Minister of Scotland issued an apology to those convicted under the Scottish Witchcraft Act — the result of a petition to the Scottish Parliament (PE1855.) The Scottish Government failed to issue a pardon. Our silence and failure to pardon our own sends the wrong message that the British people condone the witch executions in Africa, Papua New Guinea and India.
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