Indonesia rebuffs UN, EU appeals to halt looming executions

The dead are believed to include one Indonesian, a South African, and two Nigerians. All the cases have gone through a long legal process including appeals, he said. During his trial he described this torture, but the judges allowed the "confession" to be admitted as evidence. The Government resumed executions in March 2013, after a four-year de facto moratorium, in a decision that was heavily criticised by the worldwide community as running counter to the global trend towards the abolition of the death penalty.

It was the third set of executions under President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo who was elected in 2014 and campaigned on promises to improve human rights in Indonesia.

Indonesia's Foreign Ministry spokesman, Arrmanatha Nasir, said the convicts had been given their rights according to the laws.

Nigeria has protested plans by the Indonesian government to execute five Nigerians and others on drug-related offences.

He pointed out that 121 people were on death row in Indonesia, including 35 foreigners, mainly for drug-related crimes.

Under the administration of former President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, a total of 21 convicts were executed from 2005 to 2013. They are given the option to seek presidential clemency and a Supreme Court judicial review. Lawyers and rights groups had raised serious doubts about the legitimacy of the conviction of Jefferson as well as the convictions of an Indonesian woman and a Pakistani man.

"There is no evidence to support President Widodo's position", said Amnesty's Josef Benedict.

Support for the death penalty in Indonesia is generally high but there has been some public opposition.

The EU also called on Indonesia to halt all executions.

The attorney general's office, which oversees executions, could not be reached for comment.

Indonesia rejected the appeals from the United Nations and European Union to halt the execution of 14 drug convicts including an Indian and Zulfiqar Ali. He was given the death sentence even though prosecutors had recommended a 20-year jail term for Singh, who is also known as Vishal and belongs to Jalandhar in Punjab. Indonesia apparently acceded to appeals to wait for a pending case against Veloso's alleged human traffickers in the Philippines. Merri Utami told her current lawyer that shortly after her arrest the police repeatedly beat her, sexually harassed her and threatened her with rape to make her "confess" to possessing the drug; and that her sight has been damaged as a effect of the beatings.

The lawyer, Antonius Karwayu, who represented two of the convicts, said the convicts could face a firing squad at the Nusa Kambangan prison complex off the coast of Java.

Inmates are given 72-hours notification and are kept in isolation, with only the company of their religious counselors.

"I keep praying to God that they become merciful towards my brother", Ali's sister added, while stating that Ali, a father of six, was the sole breadwinner for his family.

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