Indonesia readies next round of executions

As was the case during 2015 executions, policing tightened around Nusakambangan island and prison visits banned

Indonesia readies next round of executions

World Bulletin / News Desk

Indonesia is reported to have tightened security around a notorious island prison in preparation for the next round of its controversial execution of drug smugglers.

On Monday, Wijaya Pura dock in the port town of Cilacap on Nusakambangan island was closed to the public, while authorities also prohibited people visiting family members at the prison, reported Antara News.

On the two occasions in 2015 that Indonesia executed death row inmates on the island similar suspensions occurred.

The government has previously indicated that executions would be held after Ramadan, which ended earlier this month. If completed, they will be the first round since 14 drug smugglers, including two Australians, were executed last year.

The attorney general is yet to release the list of those to be executed this time, but last week Muhammad Prasetyo said the executions were only a matter of time.

Among those reported to appear on the list is Indonesian woman Merry Utami who was transferred from Tangerang prison to Nusakambangan on Sunday, where she is currently being kept in isolation.

Utami was sentenced to death by the Tangerang District Court after being caught carrying 1.1 kilograms of heroin at Jakarta Airport.

On Monday, Detik.com reported that 41-year-old Pakistan citizen, Zulfiqar Ali -- who was sentenced to death in 2004 for possession of 300 grams of heroin -- will also be executed, while reports have suggested the Nigerian embassy in Jakarta has been asked to visit four of its nationals at the prison, indicating their executions could be soon.

Prisoners are given three days' notice before they face a firing squad.

On Monday, one visitor to Nusakambangan, Nasiroh -- many Indonesians have just one name --  said she had tried to visit her son but had been turned away.

“The officers wouldn’t allow me to cross. They said family visits to Nusakambangan would be temporarily closed for this whole week,” the Jakarta Post quote the Cilacap resident as saying.

Coordinator minister for Political, Legal and Security Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said Monday that the government would not change its decision to execute drug smugglers.

"The government does not plan to postpone the death penalty. As we know the drug situation has become a national emergency," kompas.com quoted him as saying.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Temmuz 2016, 09:18
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