Despite an outpouring of opposition from numerous foreign countries, six people who had been convicted of various drug crimes were executed in Indonesia. Just after midnight yesterday, the six people stood before a firing squad and were killed.
Numerous foreign leaders with citizens among those sentenced to die made last-minute appeals and request for clemency, all of which were denied. According to officials, there were four men and one woman executed in Indonesia and another woman in Boyolali, located in central Java.
The men and one woman killed were from Malawi, Brazil, the Netherlands, Nigeria and Indonesia while the other woman was from Vietnam. Those in Indonesia were stood in pairs on Nusakambangan Island and shot dead.
Executions have been strongly opposed by Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders and Brazilian President Dilma Roussef, among many other international leaders and diplomats. In a formal statement from Koenders, the killings were not just cruel but an inhumane punishment, a complete and unacceptable denial of any human integrity and dignity.
When it comes to drug laws, Indonesia is known for being among the toughest countries. For a four-year period, the death penalty had been set aside but in 2013, executions resumed. President of Indonesia, Joki Widodo took office last October and in keeping with a stance against drug offenders, denied all requests for clemency.
Rupert Abbot, research director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific with Amnesty International said the new administration in Indonesia took office promising to improve respect for human rights but with six people being brutally executed, the country is now moving toward regression. He also labeled the death penalty as being a violation of human rights.