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Indonesian executions postponed -

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Indonesian executions postponed

AM - Saturday, 12 August , 2006 08:21:16

Reporter: Geoff Thompson

ELIZABETH JACKSON: In a last minute reprieve, the execution of three Indonesian Christians
convicted of leading deadly attacks against Muslims has been postponed for at least a week.

Supporters of the men allege that the executions were designed to prepare Indonesia for the
imminent execution of the three Muslim Bali bombers, as our Indonesia Correspondent Geoff Thompson
reports.

GEOFF THOMPSON: As three Bali bombers await execution, last night was set to be further
confirmation of Indonesia's willingness to carry out the death penalty by firing squad.

Christians Fabianus Tibo, Dominggus da Silva and Marinus Riwu were all convicted of masterminding
attacks against Muslims in Sulawesi's central district of Poso.

(sound of Fabianus Tibo speaking)

But Fabianus Tibo claims they are innocent and speaking from jail this week he asked how it was
that those who murdered and raped went free when we get executed.

Ignatius Irianto is one of their supporters who has helped organise protests against the planned
executions.

IGNATIUS IRIANTO: The high spirit of miracle that on the last second, or last hour, someone would
change their mind because of regarding the injustice of this decision.

GEOFF THOMPSON: At the last hour, that miracle came, when Indonesia's Police Chief Sutanto
announced that Sulawesi Police have decided to delay the executions until after Indonesia's
Independence Day on the 17th of this month.

Some news reports have sourced unnamed officials admitting that for political reasons it would be
very difficult to execute Muslim Amrozi, Imam Samudra and Ali Ghufron, also known as Mukhlas,
without first executing the three Christians from Poso.

That link has also been picked up on by Usman Hamid, the Director of a leading Indonesian human
rights NGO, Kontras.

USMAN HAMID: There are some strong beliefs from the society, from the community, that people from
the Christian side will be a scapegoat or will be a pretext for the imposition of the death penalty
for the suspects of terrorism in Bali.

GEOFF THOMPSON: Fabianus Tibo has named 16 others who were involved in the violence and
investigations are continuing, which has increased concerns that the Poso three are merely
scapegoats.

ELIZABETH JACKSON: Geoff Thompson with that report.