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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…

Indonesian MP calls for immediate execution of drug convicts on death row

Meth bust in Indonesia
Meth bust in Indonesia
PAMEKASAN -- A lawmaker has called for immediate execution of drug convicts on death row to help combat the spread of illicit drug trafficking.

"We ask the Indonesian president to implement the decision on the execution of drug convicts on death row soon to stop drug trafficking in this country," MH Said Abdullah of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP) faction at the House of Representatives (DPR) said here on Sunday.

Abdullah was responding to pressure from ulemas in Madura island who are grouped in the forum of ulemas from Islamic boarding schools in Madura island.

He believed that jailed drug dealers have masterminded part of illicit drug trafficking in the country from behind bars.

If the drug offenders are not executed immediately, illicit drug trafficking will fearfully spread due to the fact that part of the illicit drug trafficking is controlled from behind bars, he said.

"Indonesia is a sovereign state and that it does not need to listen to pressure from other countries with regard to the delayed execution of drug convicts on death row," he said.

He said the ulemas' call for immediate execution of drug convicts on death row is realistic idea.

"Politically, we, the legislative body, will convey it to the Indonesian president," he said.

Many drug convicts on death row are waiting for their execution.

The National Narcotic Agency (BNN) said recently 55 drug convicts had been sentenced to death, 14 of whom were now awaiting their execution.

Last year Indonesia put to death 14 drug convicts, including two Australians, who were part of the so-called Bali Nine group, Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan.

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has declared that the nation is in a state of emergency over drugs.

Source: Republika, March 27, 2016

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