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“Dehumanized”: ECPM publishes a new fact-finding mission on Indonesian death row


mission d'enquête indonésie couloirs de la mort

On Thursday, October 10, on the occasion of the World Day against the Death Penalty, ECPM and its partners KontraS and ADPAN are gathering in Jakarta to launch their fact-finding mission, “Dehumanized”, which is studying the situation of Indonesian prisoners on death row.

Currently, it is estimated that there’s between 236 and 308 people on Indonesion death row. Although they should all be placed in high-security prisons, the scourge of prison overcrowding decides otherwise. This fact-finding mission was carried out in 8 prisons chosen for their differences, in order to have a better overall view.

Based on research and interviews conducted between December 2018 and May 2019, this report is a unique reference on the subject. The interviews with convicted prisoners, prison staff and lawyers were conducted by a team of three KontraS members, and the others by Carole Berrih, who interviewed the families of those convicted.


Read the fact-finding mission in English


Read the fact-finding mission in Bahasa

The fact-finding mission was written in partnership with :


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Background information

The right to life is recognized by the Indonesian Constitution in article 28A: “Everyone has the right to live and to defend his life and means of subsistence”.

In Indonesia, people can be sentenced to death for a wide range of crimes. Treason, aggravated murder, air crimes, drug trafficking, corruption, terrorism, child sexual abuse and international crimes. However, since independence, the death penalty has only been applied to four types of crimes: subversion, aggravated murder, terrorism and drug offences.  NGOs estimate that more than 70% of all death sentences recorded since 2015 are for drug-related offences.  Executions are by firing squad.

Under national legislation, certain categories of persons are excluded from the death penalty. Children, pregnant women and persons with mental disabilities if they committed the crime because of their disability. However, the legislation does not contain any specific provisions concerning the imposition of the death penalty on foreign nationals. Thus, of the 18 convicted persons executed in the country between 2015 and 2016, 15 were foreigners.
For example, Frenchman Serge Atlaoui has been on Indonesian death row since 2007. He was charged with drug trafficking.

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Find other ECPM fact-finding missions on death row in Mauritania, Cameroon, Morocco, Tunisia, the United States and the Great Lakes region