Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno L.P. Marsudi will meet with her Australian and Japanese counterparts this month. (Antara Photo/Andika Wahyu)
Indonesia Stresses 'Bali Nine' Executions Will Go Ahead
FEBRUARY 20, 2015
[This story was updated at 2:05 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015, to add more quotes]
Jakarta. There is no possibility that the planned execution of 'Bali Nine' drug convicts Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran will be canceled, Indonesia's foreign minister said on Friday, adding that a delay announced this week was not the result of Australian lobbying.
"That is absolutely not true," Minister Retno L.P. Marsudi said at the State Palace on Friday when asked if the government decided to delay the executions because of Australian pressure.
Retno said that the executions were delayed simply because there were still some technical problems that needed to be addressed.
"Since the beginning we have explained that the process would be carried out with precision and therefore we would not play around with the deadline," Retno said. "Indonesia's war on drugs is not only aimed at saving Indonesian youths but also to save the world."
Atorney General H.M. Prasetyo, meanwhile, also stressed that the execution of the two Australian drug traffickers would go ahead irrespective of the pleas for mercy from Down Under.He added that he hoped that Australia would stop pressuring Indonesia over the matter, Kompas.com reported.
"We never pressure others, so we hope that they also don't pressure us," Prasetyo said, adding however that it was understandable that the Australian government was trying to save the lives of its nationals. "If our citizens are in line to be executed abroad, we will certainly also stand up for them."
"I hope that Australia and any other state understand: Indonesia is facing a drug emergency and the executions will not be canceled," the attorney general stressed.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott this week called on Indonesia to "reciprocate" for all the aid Australia had given Indonesia over the years, including after the 2004 tsunami.
Four Indonesians and seven foreign nationals, including Chan and Sukumaran, had their executions delayed this week.
“This is a response to Australia’s and the [Sukumaran and Chan] families’ demand for more time,” AGO spokesman Tony Spontana told the state-run news agency Antara in Jakarta on Tuesday.
He said the Attorney General's Office would not move the 11 inmates to the Nusakambangan island prison off Central Java — where five of the last six condemned inmates were gunned down on Jan. 18 — until three days before the rescheduled executions. However, it is still not clear when the executions will take place.
Regarding Abbott's remarks about Indonesia having to be thankful to Australia, Retno stressed that the country would not budge.
"We will not respond to emotional and threatening statements. The important thing is that it is a matter of Indonesian law and we do still want to have a good relationship with Australia."