Monday, 29 October 2007
Bombers see families for last time
Also from the Australian
FAMILY members of the death-row Bali bombers have made an emotional final visit to Indonesia's highest-security jail ahead of the trio's imminent execution.
Ustad Hasyim Abdullah, principal of the al-Mukmin Islamic school in Solo, central Java, where the bombers learned their hard-line ideology, called the meeting "cheerful and happy".
He said that Amrozi bin Nurhasyim, Imam Samudra and Ali Ghufron, alias Mukhlas, who were all sentenced to death for the 2002 nightclub bombing, were not willing to beg for presidential clemency, since they did not believe they had committed any wrong.
Their wives, mothers and children, who spent several hours with the three on the southern Java prison island of Nusakambangan yesterday, had "no problem with the executions - they have accepted this, it is part of the struggle", he said.
The only thing that could prevent their deaths now is President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's interpretation of a ruling due today on the death sentences on members of the Bali Nine heroin-smuggling gang. The trio have brought a case in the Constitutional Court, widely regarded as being far more accountable and impartial than the Supreme Court that sentenced members of the group to death for trying to import almost 10kg of heroin to Sydney from Bali.
Although the higher court has been restricted to considering the question of applying the death penalty in narcotics cases, the political implications of its decision will stretch immediately to the three Bali bombers.
Facing direct election at general polls in 2009, Dr Yudhoyono and his advisers know the fierce backlash that would flow from Indonesia's Muslim heartland if the three Islamist fanatics were killed shortly after a ruling that effectively saved the lives of the six young death-row Australians.  
Posted on 10/29/2007 9:39 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
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