JOURNALIST: On the Bali Nine, I understand you have spoken to the parents, is that right?
JULIE BISHOP: Yes I have spoken to the families – both the Sukumaran and the Chan families – I met with them in Australia and I spoke to them on the phone yesterday. They were in our Embassy in Jakarta, they are on their way back to Bali now.
JOURNALIST: How are they travelling, how was that conversation?
JULIE BISHOP: Put yourself in their shoes – it is heartbreaking for them. And I reassured them that we were doing all we can. We are making representations across the Indonesian Government wherever we think we can have some influence we are trying to get the message across that we want the clemency bids considered and want a stay of execution and we are doing everything we can and we won’t stop doing that.
I reassured them that that was the approach of the Government that we won’t do anything that will precipitate an unfavourable outcome by the Indonesian Government, likewise we are contacting the very highest levels from the President through to the Foreign Minister, the Attorney-General and others.
JOURNALIST: But it is not looking good is it? It doesn’t seem like the Indonesian Government is prepared to make any concessions.
JULIE BISHOP: The Indonesian Government did carry out executions on foreign nationals recently. What we are seeking to do is a stay of execution because both of them have been rehabilitated over the last 10 years. Mr Sukumaran and Mr Chan have made remarkable progress in the prison. In fact the Indonesian prison system has achieved what many other systems around the world have not and that is the rehabilitation of those involved in the drug trade and they are both making a contribution to prison life.
It is not a life I would choose, not a quality of life that anyone of us would choose, but nevertheless they are making a contribution to prison life and I think that a stay of execution is warranted and that’s the message that we are sending to the Indonesian Government at every opportunity.
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