"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." - Oscar Wilde

Monday, January 25, 2016

Indonesia's AG: Death penalty still needed

Indonesia's attorney general insists that death penalties must be maintained in the country's judicial system as a shock therapy against serious crime.

"I'm confident that the death penalty is a kind of therapy. It is an unpleasant action, but we must do it," said Attorney General HM Prasetyo in a working meeting with the House Commission III overseeing law and human rights, on Wednesday evening.

The statement came in response to a question raised by a Commission III member from the Democratic Party, Ruhut Sitompul, who asked about the spirit behind the death penalty in Indonesia.

In November 2015, the government suspended executions of death row convicts amid an economic slowdown. 

At that time, the government wanted to focus on improving the economy, which was expanding at a slow pace of 4.73 percent in the third quarter of 2015.

"The death penalty has no connection with the economy," Prasetyo said, adding that the reactions of foreign countries about the issue are excessive.

Foreign countries and human rights groups have slammed Indonesia for implementing capital punishment against convicts, as stipulated in the Criminal Code (KUHP). President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo had two groups of convicts, totaling 14 people, executed in January and April 2015.

Two of the convicts were Australian drug smugglers Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, who were executed in April 2015, causing bilateral tension and leading to Australia recalling its ambassador from Indonesia.

"We need a similar policy to fight drug crimes," Prasetyo said, adding that Commission III should issue a statement to put to death some convicts who already on death row.

Source: Jakarta Post, January 21, 2016

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