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Countdown appears to start for execution of foreigners

By Agencies in Jakarta | China Daily | Updated: 2015-04-25 07:43

Indonesia has asked foreign embassies to send representatives to the maximum-security prison island of Nusakambangan ahead of the expected execution of 10 convicts, although an official 72-hour notice of execution has not been given yet, diplomats said on Friday.

Among the convicted drug offenders set to face a firing squad are nationals from Australia, Brazil, France and Nigeria. The case has strained relations between the governments of those nations and Indonesia.

"We have been told to be there on Saturday," said a foreign embassy official who asked not to be identified because she was not authorized to speak to the media. "We still don't know when the actual date of execution will happen but we expect that it will be in days."

France has accused Indonesia of "serious dysfunction" in its legal system that led to Frenchman Serge Atlaoui being sentenced to death, and said his execution would be "incomprehensible".

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop tried calling her Indonesian counterpart on Friday, but he was too busy to take her call, Bishop's department said, adding that it was "gravely concerned" by developments.

Mary Jane Veloso, a Filipino maid whose two sons, aged 12 and 6, have come to spend her final hours with her, was transferred on Friday morning under heavy police guard to Nusakambangan, sparking protests in Manila.

Security was heightened on Friday on Nusakambangan, although it was not immediately clear why the representatives from the four countries had been summoned.

A police spokesman said orders to prepare a firing squad had not yet come from the attorney general's office.

The attorney general has been waiting for all the legal processes of the 10 death row inmates to be completed before announcing an execution date. Lawyers were scrambling to various Indonesian courts in a last-ditch attempt to delay the executions. But the only outstanding appeal considered still valid by the attorney general was for an Indonesian national, said spokesman Tony Spontana.

The attorney general will announce the date of the execution in Jakarta, but it was not yet clear when that would happen, he said.

Reuters - AFP


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