posted on Aug, 17 2005 @ 03:23 PM
The prison sentences of 19 Indonesians convicted for the 2002 Bali bombing in which over 200 people died have been reduced today. The mastermind of
the bombing, Cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, has had his sentence of 30 months reduce by 4 and half months. The reductions have left the Australian
government dismayed as most of the people killed in the bombings were Australian. It is an Indonesian tradition to reduce the sentences of criminals
who exhibit good behaviour on certain holidays. The tradition does not extend to those on life sentances or ones with death sentences.
JAKARTA, Indonesia - The Indonesian government Wednesday reduced prison sentences for 19 people, including the alleged spiritual head of an
al-Qaida-linked group, convicted in the Bali nightclub bombings that killed 202 people. One other person was freed.
The reductions were met with dismay in Australia, home to most of the victims of the 2002 attacks.
Cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, who originally was sentenced to 30 months in prison for his role in the 2002 attacks, had his sentence reduced by 4 1/2
months, said Dedi Sutardi, chief warden at Cipinang Prison in Jakarta.
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The fact that Bashir received such a light sentence in the first place angered many Australians. That he would now have his sentence reduced further
by over 15% will leave Australians furious.
Does the Indonesian government realise just how angry it is making the citizens of its southern neighbour? Is this accidental or merely political
point scoring in Jakarta?