FORWARDED APPEAL (Indonesia): Two Indonesian prisoners facing death by firing squad 

Dear friends,

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is forwarding information for your immediate attention regarding the pending execution of two Indonesians in Western Sumatra, Indonesia, after they were sentenced to death on 26 March 2002. The two are brothers Irwan Sadawa and Taroni Hia.

The Minister for Justice and Human Rights in Indonesia is reportedly set to issue an order authorising the transfer of the two prisoners to Jakarta, where execution by firing squad will take place. Should the execution take place, it will be the first to occur in West Sumatran province.

The Indonesian government has carried out previous executions amidst the call from several human rights organisations to abolish its capital punishment. Two persons were executed in March, and three others in 2004. Sixty-two other prisoners are currently on death row in Indonesia.

Please send a letter to the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono asking him to suspend the execution of the two men and other prisoners on death row. Further also ask the president to review the administration of capital punishment in Indonesia.

Urgent Appeals Desk
Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)

Background of the case:

Name of the prisoners: Irwan Sadawa Hia (23) and his brother Taroni Hia (26)
Sentence ordered: 26 March 2002 by a court in Western Sumatra, Indonesia
Scheduled place of execution: Jakarta, Indonesia

Prisoners Irwan Sadawa Hia and Taroni Hia are to be executed by firing squad in Jakarta, according to information from the Attorney General’s office.

The two were sentenced to death on 26 March 2002 by a court in West Sumatra, for the premeditated murder of three members of a family in North Sumatra province, in December 2001. Their appeal for clemency was rejected by former President Megawati on 9 July 2004.

The murders reportedly took place when Irwan Sadawa Hia lost his job at a local hotel and asked Taroni Hia to help him rob the family of Thamrin, a fish supplier living in Dayur village in Maninjau, West Sumatra province.

The Minister for Justice and Human Rights is set to issue a letter authorising the transfer of the two men to Jakarta, for execution.

These will be the first executions to be ordered in the West Sumatran province’s history.

Previous executions:

Two Indonesians were executed this year. The prisoners, Astini and Turmudibin Kasturi were executed on March 20 and May 13 respectively. Last year three were executed; Ayodhya Prasad Chaubey, an Indian national, was executed in August, and two Thais Namsong Sirilak and Saelow Prasert were executed in October for drug trafficking.

Prior to these executions, there had been no executions in Indonesia since 2001, and before that there had been no executions in the country for six years.

At least 62 people face the death penalty in Indonesia. The Indonesian Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) noted in 2001 that, aside from being internationally recognised as a human rights violation in itself, the death penalty administered by a corrupt judiciary is extremely dangerous. Following his visit to Indonesia in July 2002, the UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers expressed concern regarding corruption within the judiciary.

Amnesty International opposes the death penalty unreservedly in all cases. Every death sentence is an affront to human dignity, every execution a symptom of a culture of violence, rather than a solution to it. Today, 120 countries are abolitionist in law or practice.

The risk of error in applying the death penalty is inescapable, yet it is irrevocable. Amnesty International recognizes the need to address serious crime all over the world, including murder and the trade in illicit drugs. However, the organization is convinced that the death penalty will not provide a solution. There is no clear evidence that the death penalty acts as a more effective deterrent against crime than other forms of punishment.


To support this case, please click here: SEND APPEAL LETTER



Suggested letter:

Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
President, Republic of Indonesia
Istana Merdeka
Jakarta 10110
Fax: +62 21 345 2685 / 526 8726

Dear Mr. President,

Re: Two Indonesian prisoners face death by firing squad

I am writing to raise my deep concern regarding the pending execution of two Indonesian citizens, namely Irwan Sadawa Hia (23) and his brother Taroni Hia (26), who face death by firing squad.

I have learned that Irwan Sadawa and his brother Taroni were sentenced to death by a Court in Western Sumatra on 26 March 2002 for the alleged murder of three members of a family in North Sumatra province in December 2001. The alleged motive was to rob the family after Irwan lost his job.

I express sympathy to the murder victim's family and their quest for justice. But I  appeal for the Indonesian government's mercy in regards to these executions. I also ask that the government consider reviewing its law on capital punishment. I believe that there is a need for the government to seriously address the increasing number of criminal offenders sentenced to death.

Growing concern by the international community regarding Indonesia's policy of capital punishment should be addressed first before pursuing any further executions. It is my request that such executions be commuted to jail sentences, which I believe would not compromise the justice system in Indonesia.

As regards Irwan Sadawa and Taroni Hia, I ask that you please respect their rights to life by ensuring that executions does not take place, and their death sentences commuted to jail terms.

I look forward to your immediate action on this matter.

Respectfully yours,



Abdul Rahman Saleh
Attorney General
Jaksa Agung
Jl. Sultan Hasanuddin No. 1
Kebayoran Baru
Jakarta Selantan 12130
Fax: +62 21 725 0213

Chairman, Komnas HAM
Abdul Hakim Garuda Nusantara
Komisi Nasional Hak Asasi Manusia
Jl Latuharhary No. 4B
Jakarta Pusat 10310
Fax: +62 21 392 5227

Thank you.

Urgent Appeals Programme 
Asian Human Rights Commission

Document Type : Forwarded Urgent Appeal
Document ID : FA-18-2005
Countries : Indonesia,