Indonesian maid who killed boss in rape attempt executed in Saudi Arabia
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Indonesian maid who killed boss in rape attempt executed in Saudi Arabia

THE sudden execution of an Indonesian maid convicted over the murder of her employer who reportedly attempted to rape her at the time in Saudi Arabia has caused outrage in her home country.

President Joko Widodo said he called Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, Adel al-Jubeir, on Tuesday to express the country’s protest and to demand reasons why Indonesia was not informed about the execution of Tuti Tursilawati.

“We have called Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister and conveyed our protest,” Widodo said, as quoted by Reuters.

The woman, who worked in the city of Ta’if, was found guilty of the murder in June 2011.

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Migrant Care, an Indonesian advocacy group, said the mother of one was defending herself during from being raped during the time of the killing.

The president said the Saudi ambassador to Indonesia had been summoned to discuss the matter.

Despite the strong diplomatic ties Indonesia shares with Saudi Arabia, owing to their shared Muslim faith, lawmakers did not mince their words in condemning the execution.

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(File) Indonesian domestic helpers raise their hands during a police check on the eligibility of the workers’ status to travel and work abroad at a shelter in Bekasi on June 22, 2011. Source: AFP

“The kingdom of Saudi Arabia has ignored principles of human rights, including a right for everyone to live,” Abidin Fikri, a member of Indonesia’s parliament, said.

Indonesia, which has a high population of workers based in the Gulf state, had repeatedly asked the Saudi government to improve protection of its citizens there. The stance was reiterated during al-Jubeir’s recent visit to Indonesia.

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Human Rights advocate Amnesty International Indonesia said Saudi Arabia had damaged the ethics of diplomacy after the execution.

“For umpteenth time Saudi Arabia has hurt the diplomatic ethics of both countries that should have put forth the respect for human rights,” said Amnesty International Indonesia Executive Director Usman Hamid in a statement, as quoted in Tempo.

Calling the death sentence “inhumane” and a violation of the right to life guaranteed under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), Usman also pointed out that Indonesia practised capital punishment.

“It just isn’t logical that Indonesia requests another country to release one of its citizen from the death row when Indonesia itself still practices the inhumane and violent punishment,” Usman said.