[Deathpenalty] [POSSIBLE SPAM] death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Sun Nov 9 13:09:43 CST 2008
Torrent of rage as Indonesia on high alert
INDONESIA is on high alert for terrorist attacks and mob violence, fearing
radicals will take revenge for the execution of the 3 Bali bombers.
As hundreds of extremists gathered in the bombers' home villages in East
and West Java for the funerals yesterday, there were two hoax bomb threats
against the Australian Embassy and Indonesia's anti-corruption watchdog,
the KPK. The threats were an indication of the widespread resentment
towards foreigners, and Australians in particular, after the executions.
The Rudd Government stepped up its warnings to Australians about the
dangers of travel to Indonesia and Bali.
"We continue to have credible information that terrorists may be planning
attacks in Indonesia," the Foreign Minister, Stephen Smith, said.
Mr Smith pleaded with school leavers planning a last hurrah in Bali, to
reconsider, although there was no change to the department's travel
He also said Australia would soon co-sponsor a resolution in the United
Nations General Assembly calling for a moratorium on capital punishment.
"We urge countries who continue to apply capital punishment not to do so,"
he told ABC Television just hours after the executions.
Claire Hatton, whose husband, Christian Redman, was killed in the 2002
attacks, first heard about the execution of his killers at the Coogee
memorial yesterday. "I saw a quote by Mahatma Gandhi and it said: 'The
trouble with an eye for an eye is that it makes us all blind'. That's what
Amrozi, Mukhlas and Imam Samudra were shot dead in the middle of the night
for a crime that ripped apart the lives of many Australians and brought
mass casualty terrorism to the nation's near neighbour.
Tied to posts in a clearing near their prison in Central Java and shot by
firing squads at the same time, the men ended their lives despised by most
but revered by their followers as martyrs and holy warriors. They were
shot through the heart at 12.15 yesterday morning, Indonesian time, after
a Bali prosecutor lowered a ceremonial sword. The men refused to wear
blindfolds and none of them wanted to make a final statement, according to
Jasman Panjaitan, a spokesman for Indonesia's Attorney-General.
They were "instantly dead" after being shot, he said.
By first light, mobs of supporters had descended on the men's home towns
for their funerals, chanting jihadist slogans, clashing with police and
threatening foreign journalists. An exception was made for the
Qatari-based news service al-Jazeera.
But, despite the calls of the Bali bombers for vengeance upon their deaths
and warnings from the Australian Government, there were no immediate
reprisal terrorist attacks yesterday.
"Hopefully, they won't happen. We have no information about [terrorist
plots]," said Abubakar Nataprawira, a spokesman for Indonesian police.
"There have been [hoax] bomb threats at malls and embassies but they were
just people trying to spread terror. People should please do their normal
In the East Java village of Tenggulun, the home of Amrozi and Mukhlas,
curious onlookers easily outnumbered the 500 or so self-styled jihadists
in matching bandanas who poured in from all over Indonesia.
Onlookers from neighbouring villages watched the procession of the men's
bodies through town to their eventual burial place, a new, large
purpose-built plot in a grove of mango trees across the road from the town
The extremists in Tenggulun became particularly excited when three gagaks,
or crows, circled overhead just after the helicopters transporting the
bodies of Amrozi and Mukhlas touched down. "They are coming, they are
coming," they screamed as they looked at the birds, known in Javanese lore
for arriving when dead bodies are present.
Abu Bakar Bashir, the radical cleric and co-founder of the terrorist group
Jemaah Islamiah, arrived in Tenggulun on Saturday to praise the bombers.
"Their fighting spirit in defending Islam should be followed," he said.
"We will win the fight in this world or die as martyrs. Even if they are
murdered they will die as Islamic martyrs.
Speaking at the funeral service last night, Bashir proclaimed them martyrs
who defended Islam and sharia law. "They committed mistakes, please
forgive them," he said. "I hope the mujahideen will continue their
struggle to defend Islam."
Maaruf Amin, deputy chairman of the Indonesian Ulemas Council, the chief
body for Islamic clerics in Indonesia said: "They did not die a holy
death. That can only be in a war and Indonesia is not at war."
In West Java, Imam Samudra's coffin was carried through a seething mass of
fist-pumping supporters to its final resting place. Police increased
security across the country but melted away by afternoon in Tenggulun,
allowing the mob to effectively control the town.
The death toll was 202, and hundreds more were maimed, after 2 bombs
ripped through Bali's Sari Club and Paddy's Bar on October 12, 2002.
Mukhlas was the operational leader, Imam Samudra his field commander, and
Amrozi purchased the bomb-making ingredients and vehicle used in the major
explosion. All 3 admitted their guilt and showed no remorse. They said
they welcomed death but launched appeal after appeal to forestall their
executions and help craft an image as holy warriors who were the victims
of an unjust, unIslamic judicial system.
Even after death came, their lawyers called for another inquiry, this time
an investigation into whether the men had been tortured or not.
Supporters of Samudra handed out copies of a letter he wrote before his
death "urging all grandchildren to kill all kafirs (non-believers)".
Their deaths drew renewed sympathy from both sides of Australian politics
for victims' families, and a commitment to seek an end to capital
The Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, reminded Australians that more than 200
families around the world were "changed fundamentally" by the murderous
"When memories come searing back, it is really hard," Mr Rudd said. "This
is more than 200 families, Australian, Indonesian, from elsewhere in the
world. Lives which were just completely changed in the most horrific of
ways by the Bali bombing."
Some of the Coogee Dolphins, who lost 6 players in the blast at the Sari
Club, gathered at the Beach Palace Hotel for a quiet drink.
Club lifetime member and Sari Club survivor Erik de Haart said the
executions were a chance for everyone to move on.
"You can get on with the rest of your life," Mr de Haart said. "You don't
have to turn on the TV and see their smiling faces, laughing at you all
(source: Sydney Morning Herald)
Death penalty still opposed
FOREIGN Affairs Minister Stephen Smith expressed contempt for the Bali
bombers yesterday but stressed Australia's opposition to the death
"I had nothing but contempt for what the Bali bombers did and what they
had to say when they were alive. And my view hasn't changed now," Mr Smith
said. But he added: "Australia, of course, for a long period of time, has
generally opposed capital punishment."
Mr Smith said Australia would soon be co-sponsoring an international
moratorium on capital punishment at the UN General Assembly.
He advised Australians to reconsider travel to Indonesia and Bali, where
they could be vulnerable to reprisals from the bombers' supporters. "We
continue to have credible information that terrorists may be planning
attacks in Indonesia (and) Bali," he said.
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said his thoughts were with the families of the
victims of the bombings.
"Today is a time for us all to bear in our thoughts and our prayers the
200 Australian and Indonesian families who were shattered by the Bali
bombings six years ago. Their lives remain shattered. They've been changed
fundamentally by that murder," he said yesterday.
The Victorian Government said it hoped the execution of the bombers would
bring some relief for the victims' families.
The Federal Opposition condemned the bombers, but stressed its opposition
to the death penalty. "This is no doubt a heinous crime, and of course our
thoughts go very much to the victims and their families, but the Coalition
remains opposed to the death penalty," said Opposition foreign affairs
spokeswoman Helen Coonan.
Amnesty International criticised the Federal Government for failing to
call for clemency for the bombers, saying it put the lives of Australians
on death row at risk, including 3 of the Bali 9.
"By being selective in its call for clemency the Government is promoting a
2-tiered policy on capital punishment, which inevitably undermines
Australia's standing on the issue," Amnesty campaign co-ordinator Katie
Greens leader Bob Brown said the death of the bombers ended a sad and
distressing affair but he would have preferred to see them jailed for
(source: The Age)
Campaign against capital punishment
AUSTRALIA will lead an international push to end capital punishment
following the executions of three Bali bombers by firing squad yesterday.
The Government and the Opposition united in condemning the death penalty
after the execution of Ali Ghufron, Amrozi and Imam Samudra, who were
responsible for the 2002 attacks.
Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said that, in the near future, Australia
would co-sponsor a UN resolution calling for a moratorium on capital
He said he had nothing but contempt for the bombers, but Australia did not
support the death penalty.
"Australia, of course, for a long period of time has generally opposed
capital punishment," Mr Smith told the ABC. "We urge countries who
continue to apply capital punishment not to do so."
Mr Smith said his thoughts were with the families of the victims and he
hoped the executions would at least bring them some closure. "It's not a
day that fills us with any joy, or with any celebration," he said.
Opposition finance spokesman Joe Hockey backed the Government in
condemning capital punishment but he said justice was important.
"Whether it be the death penalty or locking someone up forever, it is
important that justice prevail and that a very strong message be sent to
any would-be terrorist, that ultimately you'll pay a price for your
actions," he said.
(source: The Australian)
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