Countdown appears to start for execution of foreigners in Indonesia




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By Randy Fabi and Kanupriya Kapoor

JAKARTA  – Indonesia has asked foreign embassies to send representatives to a maximum security prison ahead of the expected execution of 10 drug convicts, although an official 72-hour notice of execution has not been given yet, diplomats said Friday.

Among the convicted drug offenders to face the firing squad are nationals , , France and Nigeria and the case has strained relations between the governments of those nations and Indonesia.

“It’s true, we have been told to be there Saturday,” said a foreign embassy official asked not to be identified because she was not authorised to speak to the media.

“We don’t know when the actual date of execution will happen but we expect that it will be in days.”

Security was heightened Friday at the prison island of Nusakambangan the Javanese of Cilacap, where the executions will take place. It was not immediately clear why the representatives the four countries had been summoned.

A police spokesman said to prepare the firing squad had not yet come the Attorney General’s Office.

The Attorney General has been waiting for all the legal processes of the 10 death row inmates to be completed before announcing an execution date.
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Lawyers were scrambling to various Indonesian courts in a last-ditch attempt to delay the execution. But the only outstanding appeal considered valid by the attorney general was for an Indonesian national, said spokesman Tony Spontana.

The attorney general will announce the date of the execution in Jakarta but it was not yet clear when that would happen, he said.

On a visit to Indonesia, Philippine Vice Jejomar Binay is expected to meet Joko Widodo on Friday to make a final appeal for mercy on behalf of one its citizens that is among the group of 10.

France has warned Indonesia that the executions could damage ties, while has pleaded repeatedly for clemency for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, Australians arrested as ringleaders of the so-called Bali Nine drug-smuggling group.

The members of the Bali Nine were arrested at the main airport on the holiday island of Bali for trying to smuggle 8 kg (18 lb) of heroin to . The seven other members of the gang, all Australians, have been jailed in Indonesia.

Indonesia has harsh punishments for drug crimes and resumed executions in 2013 after a five-year gap. Six executions have been carried out so far this year.(Reuters)