Indonesia’s executions a huge disappointment

Indonesia’s simultaneous executions of eight death row inmates at the Nusa Kambangan prison island is a huge disappointment and a step backward.

We are disappointed that Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s nascent administration is taking this cynical populist approach of executing convicts to shore up his political support base.

Taking a human life is irreversible. If new evidence appears, and an inmate has been executed, there is no way to dispense justice to a dead person.

Case in point is the temporary reprieve for Filipino Mary Jane Veloso. Hours before she was supposed to be executed, the woman who recruited Veloso voluntarily surrendered to the police in the Phillippines, providing a new dimension to Veloso’s case.

To oppose the death penalty should not to be confused with not taking a tough stand on criminals. It is to ensure that justice is carried out judiciously without innocent lives being unjustly punished.

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