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In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

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To cope with his dread, John Kitzhaber opened his leather-bound journal and began to write.
It was a little past 9 on the morning of Nov. 22, 2011. Gary Haugen had dropped his appeals. A Marion County judge had signed the murderer's death warrant, leaving Kitzhaber, a former emergency room doctor, to decide Haugen's fate. The 49-year-old would soon die by lethal injection if the governor didn't intervene.
Kitzhaber was exhausted, having been unable to sleep the night before, but he needed to call the families of Haugen's victims.
"I know my decision will delay the closure they need and deserve," he wrote.
The son of University of Oregon English professors, Kitzhaber began writing each day in his journal in the early 1970s. The practice helped him organize his thoughts and, on that particular morning, gather his courage.
Kitzhaber first dialed the widow of David Polin, an inmate Haugen beat and stabbed to death in 2003 while already serving a life sentence fo…

More drug convicts to be executed next year: Indonesian Attorney General M Prasetyo

Attorney General M Prasetyo
Attorney General M Prasetyo
Attorney General M Prasetyo has stressed that a third round of drug convict executions will be carried out next year.

He has yet to add further details with regard to schedule or the number of convicts that the government expects to execute.

“The executions will be implemented in 2016. This should become our focus. Law enforcement should keep moving ahead,” said Prasetyo at the Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Minister’s office on Wednesday as quoted by kompas.com.

The third round of executions should have been carried out sometime this year, but the executions were delayed due to economic reasons. It is commonly feared that further executions will hinder the flow of investment into Indonesia.

To date, 14 drugs drug convicts have been executed. The previous executions received strong criticism from anti-death penalty activists and caused the souring of diplomatic relations with a number of countries including Brazil and Australia.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff responded to the execution of a Brazilian citizen by ordering its ambassador to return to Brazil and a similar move was made by the Australian government, whom lost two of its citizens.

Prasetyo, however, said that the executions had been approved of by many neighboring countries because they considered Indonesia to be serious in the fight against drugs.

“Our neighbors appreciate our action because drugs are our common enemy,” he added.

Source: The Jakarta Post, December 25, 2015

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