Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Duterte gave 'go-ahead' for Mary Jane Veloso's execution –report

President Rodrigo Duterte has given the Indonesian government the "go-ahead" to execute Mary Jane Veloso, who is on death row for drug trafficking, a report on Jakarta Post said Monday.
"President Duterte has given the go-ahead to proceed with the execution," the report quoted Indonesian President Joko Widodo as saying.
Adam Harvey, the ABC Indonesia Correspondent, said Duterte made the statement during his meeting with Widodo last Friday. 
Widodo, who met with Duterte during the Philippine leader's working visit to Indonesia last week, reportedly gave the statement to Antara news agency in Serang, Banten.
The Jakarta Post report also quoted Widodo as saying that he explained Veloso's case to Duterte during their meeting — from her being found guilty by the court for carrying 2.6 kilograms of heroin to Indonesia, to the delay in her execution last year.
Widodo said legal process on Veloso's case will be followed up by Attorney General M. Prasetyo.
"Follow your own laws"
"Follow your own laws. I will not interfere," presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella quoted Duterte as telling Widodo during a news briefing.
Abella said Duterte had no categorical statement telling Widodo to push through with the execution.
"There was none. There was no endorsement. He simply said, 'Follow your own laws,'" he said.
For its part, the National Union of People's Lawyers (NUPL), which is helping Veloso and her parents in the Philippines, refused to comment on the report pending "indubitable A1 confirmation."
"Unless there is indubitable A1 confirmation either way, the Veloso family & their Filipino lawyers from NUPL opt for the moment to decline to give comment until we receive official information both from the Ph and Indonesian governments," it said in a brief statement posted on Facebook on Monday afternoon.
Closed-door meeting
Duterte, upon his arrival from Indonesia on Friday night, said he discussed Veloso's case with Widodo behind closed doors. He said he was not at liberty to reveal details on the discussions as he had to first talk with Veloso's parents.
Veloso, a mother of two, was convicted for bringing in 2.6 kilograms of heroin at the Yogyakarta Airport in 2010. Her execution by firing squad was put on hold in 2015 to allow her to testify against the recruiters who allegedly duped her into bringing the illegal drugs to Indonesia.
Duterte went to Indonesia Thursday night after attending the ASEAN Summit in Laos. Before departing for Laos on Monday, he said he would intercede on behalf of Veloso, but added he is willing to accept any decision on her fate. —KBK, GMA News

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