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Thursday, February 5, 2015

Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran to face firing squad

All appeals and attempts to change the minds of Indonesians about drug smugglers Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have failed. Even the last hope of a presidential pardon has been denied.

Chan and Sukumaran were sentenced to death in 2006 as leaders of a drug smuggling ring involving nine Australians who were caught trying to smuggle heroin out of Bali into Australia.

The Australian government has pleaded with the Indonesian government to relent but it is now clear there is nothing more they can do.

Both men have shown a willingness to change their lives by helping fellow inmates in the nine years since they have been locked up and insist they have been completely rehabilitated.  But the Indonesians will not be moved - they have to go.

The executions of five foreigners and an Indonesian woman were carried out last month.

A last minute personal appeal by Brazil and the Dutch government didn't help.  Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders called the executions "a cruel and inhuman punishment that amounts to an unacceptable denial of human dignity and integrity."

Brazil and the Netherlands were so upset, they recalled their ambassadors home but I doubt Australia will do the same.  Most Australians have little sympathy for the pair, they were well aware of the Indonesian drug laws, yet they still went ahead.

Sadly, they threw the dice and lost.