Indonesia executes drug traffickers

Indonesian police
Indonesian police

Indonesia has executed four convicted drug traffickers by firing squad at the Nusa Kambangan penal island on Friday (local time).

Indonesia's Attorney General's office had earlier said that it would "soon" execute 14 people. 

Deputy Attorney General Noor Rachmad said the deaths had happened, Al Jazeera has reported.

The remaining 10 people who were expected to have been executed have reportedly been spared.

The dead are believed to include one Indonesian, a South African, and two Nigerians.

This is the third set of executions carried out since Indonesian President Joko Widodo took power in 2014, and represents a rise in executions for drug traffickers, which the government says is necessary to stop a drug epidemic.

The executions have been condemned internationally, with leaders and human rights organisations appealing to Indonesia to stop the killings.

Grant Bayldon, executive director of Amnesty International in New Zealand, says the killings are unjustified.

"There is absolutely no way to guarantee that these people have had a fair trial in Indonesia. It's a country where torture is regularly used to extract confessions, and it's a country where people are regularly denied basic legal representation," he says.