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California: With state executions on hold, death penalty foes rethink ballot strategy

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California advocates of abolishing the death penalty got a jolt of momentum in March, when Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that he would not allow any executions to take place while he was in office.
But after trying twice this decade to persuade voters to end capital punishment, they have no plans to go to the ballot again in 2020. Rather than seeking to build on Newsom’s temporary reprieve for Death Row inmates, activists are taking their own pause.
Grappling with the legacy of their two failed initiatives, advocates are reassessing their strategy and retooling their message. Natasha Minsker, a political consultant who has long been involved with abolition efforts, said the governor’s moratorium has given advocates the opportunity to do long-term planning.
“There’s this excitement and energy in our movement that we haven’t had in a long time,” Minsker said.
Newsom’s executive order caught many Californians by surprise. Although he supported the unsuccessful ballot measures to abolish t…

Indonesia Moving to Reduce Death Row Population by Increasing Rate of Executions

Kerobokan Prison
(6/25/2012) The Bali Post quoted the National Chief Prosecutors office as confirming that prosecutors in Banten (West Java) and Jakarta are making preparations for a suden surge of executions of prisoners now under sentence of death in Indonesia.

A Junior Chief Prosecutor, Hamzah Tadja, confirmed steps are in play that will soon bring 20 people on death row in the two locales before a firing squad.

The numbers slated for death are 3 in Banten and 17 in Jakarta. While confirming the preparations are ongoing, Hamzah refused to give a time or a place for the coming executions.

“I am not allowed to tell you (the time of the planned executions). Later, when it’s time, you’ll know,” Hamzah explained on Monday, June 25, 2012.

He added that he was unable to provide complete data on the total number of people now sitting on death row across Indonesia, because local prosecutors have yet to file formal reports on the actual number of those under a sentence of death who have exhausted all possible avenues of appeal.

Indonesia has recently formalized the appeal process for those under sentence of death in order to shorten the time between sentencing and actual execution. In the past, the appeal process could consume decades.

The last execution before a firing squad in Indonesia occurred in 2008 when the three Bali bombers were shot.


Source: balidiscovery.com, June 25, 2012

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