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Indonesian president introduces death penalty for child rapists

President Widodo
President Widodo
President Joko Widodo on Wednesday (May 25) signed a government regulation in lieu of the law approving the death penalty as a maximum sentence for sexual crimes against children.

According to the regulation, offenders could face chemical castration and be monitored with an electronic chip tracking their movements. 

Other forms of punishment included in the bill extend to life imprisonment, as well as a minimum of 10 to 20 years in jail.

"Sexual violence against children is an extraordinary crime," the President said at a news conference at the presidential palace, adding that he hoped the regulation would keep perpetrators in check and discourage sexual crimes.

The harsher stance for child rapists and perpetrators of sexual violence against children comes after activists and masses called for reform, in the wake of the brutal gang rape and murder of a 14-year-old-school girl in Bengkulu on the western island of Sumatra in April.

The incident erupted on social media after activists spoke out, sparking public outrage and prompting protests in the capital.

The National Commission on Violence against Women reportedly gets 35 cases of sexual violence towards women every day. Indonesia meanwhile sentences rapists to a maximum of 14 years in prison.

Source: channelnewsasia.com, May 25, 2016


Child Rapists Face Death Sentence Now As President Approves New Law

Indonesian President Joko Widodo has approved a law prescribing the death penalty as the maximum sentence for child rapists, after several brutal gang rapes sparked public outrage in the country.

Sexual violence is prevalent in Southeast Asia's most populous country, but gang rape is unusual.

Social media erupted in calls for harsher punishment following a case early this month, in which a group of men was charged with raping and killing a schoolgirl in Bengkulu in the western island of Sumatra. The case prompted rights groups to accuse the government of not doing enough to protect women and children, and provoked a tweet by Widodo himself seeking punishment of the perpetrators, although his call came more than a month after the event.

Today however, Widodo said those responsible for sexual abuse of children, as well as repeat sex offenders, could also face chemical castration and be tagged with an electronic chip to track their movements, citing the law he signed.

"Sexual violence against children is an extraordinary crime," Widodo told a news conference at the presidential palace. This regulation is meant to overcome (such) incidents, in which we have seen a significant rise."

Source: wetinhappen.com.ng, May 25, 2016


Indonesia introduces death penalty and chemical castration for paedophiles

President Joko Widodo introduces new measures after the brutal gang-rape and murder of a schoolgirl

"This regulation is intended to overcome the crisis caused by sexual violence against children," President Joko Widodo said late Wednesday at the presidential palace in Jakarta.

"Sexual crimes against children are extraordinary crimes, because they threaten the lives of children."

The presidential decree brings the new punishments into immediate effect, although parliament could later overturn it.

Widodo was spurred into action after the murder and gang-rape in April of a 14-year-old girl, who was set upon by a gang of drunken men and boys as she walked home from school on the western island of Sumatra.

Her battered body was found 3 days later in woods, tied up and naked. 7 teenagers, aged 16 and 17, were jailed earlier this month over the assault.

The attack sparked a national debate on sexual violence, led to calls for harsher punishments for child sex offenders and prompted protests in the capital Jakarta.

The case has drawn comparisons with the fatal gang-rape of a student on a bus in Delhi in 2012, which sparked mass protests and led to an overhaul of India's rape laws.

Indonesia is likely to draw fire for expanding its use of the death penalty. Jakarta has faced criticism for use its use of capital punishment against drug traffickers, and sparked international outrage last year when it put 7 foreign drug convicts to death by firing squad.

Under previous laws, the maximum sentence for rape - including of a minor - was 14 years in jail.

By introducing chemical castration, Indonesia joins a small group who use the punishment worldwide, including Poland and some states in the US. In 2011, South Korea became the 1st Asian country to legalise the punishment.

Widodo did not give further details about tagging suspects with monitoring devices. Local media previously reported that a microchip could be implanted in child sex offenders' legs on their release from jail.

Source: The Guardian, May 26, 2016

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