As a goal for civilized nations, abolition of the death penalty was promoted during the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights' in 1948. It found, however, that expression was only implicit in the recognition of what international human rights law designated "the right to life;" the same approach was taken in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man, adopted May 4, 1948.
Schabas, William A.
"International Law And Abolition Of The Death Penalty: Recent Developments,"
ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law: Vol. 4
, Article 23.
Available at: http://nsuworks.nova.edu/ilsajournal/vol4/iss2/23