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The Aum Shinrikyo Executions: Why Now?

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With the execution of Aum Shinrikyo leader and six of his followers, Japan looks to leave behind an era of tragedy. 
On July 6, 2018, Japanese authorities executed seven members of the religious movement Aum Shinrikyo (Aum true religion, or supreme truth), which carried out the 1995 Tokyo subway sarin attack and a series of other atrocities. None of the seven of the executed men were directly involved in releasing the gas on that tragic day; four of those who did remain under a death sentence, and their executions may be imminent.
The seven executed were involved in planning and organizing the various crimes committed by Aum. Asahara Shoko (born Matsumoto Chizuo), was the founder and leader of the movement, having developed the doctrinal system instrumental to Aum’s violence and its concept of a final cosmic war of good (Aum) against evil (the corrupt material world and everyone — from the Japanese government to the general public — who lived in it). Asahara is believed to have given …

Indonesia announces next 10 to be executed, all foreigners convicted of drug crimes

It has been nearly a year since April 29, 2015, the last time Indonesia carried out the death penalty. On that day, a firing squad executed eight people convicted of drug-related crimes, despite the pleas and outcry of the international community. 


But various officials since then have been adamant that executions would eventually resume, and now we know they were quite serious. Yesterday, the government announced the names of the next 10 people set to be executed in Indonesia. All of them are foreigners who have been found guilty of various drug-related crimes.

Of the 10 foreigners set to executed, four are Nigerian (Humphrey Ejike, Eugene Ape, Ekpere Dike Ole Kamma, and Frank Chidebere Nwakome), two are Malaysian (Lee Chee Hen and Tham Tuck Yin), two are American (Frank Amado, and Lim Jit Wee), one is Zimbabwean (Federik Luttar) and one is Senegalese (Seck Osmane).

With the exception of Senegal, all of those set to be executed are from countries where the death penalty is still practiced. Some have speculated that might be to shield Indonesia from the same kind of criticism the government received during the last round of executions from countries such as Australia where the death penalty has been abolished.

Not included among those set to be executed is Mary Jane Veloso, the Filipino woman who was given a last minute stay of execution last year after officials from the Philippines successfully lobbied the Indonesian government to allow her to live while the woman who allegedly tricked her into being a drug smuggler underwent investigation and trial.

Also not included on the list is Frenchman Serge Atlaoui, who had also been set to be part of last year’s executions. The government said Atlaoui has exhausted all of legal options to avoid the firing squad when courts dismissed his bid to challenge the president’s rejection of his plea for clemency in June

Chief Public Prosecutor Sudung Situmorang said the next step in the process was to get the greenlight from the Attorney General to move forward.

"It is being coordinated with the attorney general, we are awaiting a reply to the letter we sent him," Sudung told Harian Terbit yesterday.

No date or timeline has been set for this next round of executions. Sudung said the timing was at the discretion of the attorney general HM Prasetyo.

“We will see later, as I said it is still rainy season. We are waiting for the weather to be good,” Prasetyo told Media Indonesia yesterday. However, a spokesman for the AGO apparently told ABC correspondent Adam Harvey that the attorney general was just "joking" when he made that statement.

Source: Coconuts Jakarta, April 7, 2016

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