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YOGYAKARTA, Indonesia – In the middle of the night, Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso was transferred to Nusa Kambangan prison island in Cilacap, Central Java, the place where Indonesia holds its executions.
Police officers and soldiers arrived at the Wirogunan Penitentiary in Yogyakarta at around 1 a.m. on Friday, April 24, followed by 8 police cars and a number of unidentified private cars. A few minutes later, the police cars left with the 30-year-old Filipina mother of two on death row. (FAST FACTS: The case of Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso)
“She was very calm,” prison warden Zaenal Arifin told Rappler.
At around 5am, local TV reported that the police convoy arrived at the port of Cilacap, from where they boarded a boat to the prison island.
The transfer came a few hours after the Indonesian government ordered officials to make preparations to execute a group of drug convicts, most of them foreigners, despite mounting international criticism.
But no date has been set for the executions. Convicts must be given 72 hours notice before being put to death, and Spontana said that those awaiting execution had not yet been given this notice.
Atty. Edre U. Olalia, the secretary general of the National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL), who is with Veloso’s family in Jakarta, said they remained hopeful until that 72-hour notice is given.
Veloso’s children and mother arrived in Jakarta around midnight with plans to visit her in Yogyakarta on Friday. Her two sons on Thursday made an emotional appeal to Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s son to help save their mother. (READ: Mary Jane’s kids to Indonesian president’s son: Help save mom)
Olalia said they will still fly to Yogyakarta but make plans to go to Cilacap from there.
The developments also come barely two days after Philippine Vice President Jejomar Binay met with Indonesan Vice President Jusuf Kalla to appeal for an act of humanity for Veloso.
Lawyers are still hoping to file a second case review for Veloso on Monday. (READ: Lawyers: PH anti-drug agency to provide evidence for Mary Jane) – with a report from Jet Damazo-Santos/Rappler.com