Jakarta. All prisons in the notorious Nusakambangan Island are reportedly safe and ready to stage its third round of executions as several inmates on death-row have been moved there, Justice and Human Rights Minister Yasonna Laoly said on Monday (25/07).
“The prisons are highly safe. We are ready to proceed with the executions pending Attorney General H.M. Prasetyo's instructions,” Yasonna said at his office in Jakarta, as reported by Antara news agency.
The minister declined to announce the date of the executions as he noted that the Attorney General's Office and Central Java Prosecutors' Office will do so when ready.
However, Yasonna confirmed that death-row inmates have been moved to Nusakambangan Island, saying that “it is part of their normal procedure.”
The inmates include convicted drug smugglers Merry Utami, an Indonesian, and Zulkifar Ali, a Pakistani national, who were moved to Batu Prison in Nusakambangan Island recently and were reportedly among those scheduled to be executed.
Although the exact number of death-row inmates in the third round of executions remain unclear, Prasetyo confirmed last month that the Indonesian government was going to execute 18 drug convicts this year, and 30 more in 2017. The third round of executions is scheduled to take place on the island, but Prasetyo has also not yet announced the exact date.
In 2015, despite repeated pleas for mercy from foreign governments and international organizations, Indonesia executed 14 people for drug trafficking – among them citizens of Australia, Brazil, the Netherlands and Nigeria.
It is generally understood that death-row inmates are moved to Nusakambangan Island days before they are executed by firing squad. They are held in isolation and receive counseling from religious guides, while the government fulfills their last wishes.