News World Heartbroken families say their ‘last goodbyes’

Heartbroken families say their ‘last goodbyes’

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Emotional relatives of Bali Nine duo Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have made a final heartfelt, tearful plea to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to spare their lives.

The relatives said their goodbyes to Chan and Sukumaran, who are set to be executed within hours by an Indonesian firing squad, for attempting to smuggle heroin out of Indonesia.

Siblings and parents of the duo wept as they bravely fronted the media just before 7pm Tuesday (AEST).

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Andrew’s brother, Michael Chan, spoke passionately about what could be his final visit with his sibling.

Michael Chan, brother of Andrew, faces the media.
Michael Chan, brother of Andrew, faces the media. Photo: AAP

“Today is something that no other family should have to go through – nine families inside the prison saying goodbye to their loved ones,” Michael said.

“Kids, mothers, cousins, bothers, sisters, you name it they were all there.

“And to walk out of there and say goodbye for the last time – it’s torture, no family should go through that.”

He called on Indonesia to introduce a moratorium on the death penalty.

“Because now the family is going to have a grieving process for the rest of the life, not only to lose a loved one, but to grieve for the rest of their life,” Michael said.

“I just hope the president, somewhere in his heart, he can show some courage to show some mercy to these nine individuals, and call this off. It’s not too late.

“It’s up to him.”

Myuran’s mother, Raji Sukumaran, could barely stand as she pleaded for her son’s life.

“I just had to say goodbye to my son, I won’t see him again,” Raji said.

“They want to take him and shoot him, and he is beautiful and has a lot of compassion for other people.

Chintu Sukumaran with a painting by brother Myuran.
Chintu Sukumaran with a painting by brother Myuran. Photo: AAP

“I am asking the president to please don’t kill him, please don’t kill him today. Please don’t go ahead with the executions. Please don’t.”

Myuran’s brother, Chintu Sukumaran, said the families would hold hope for the Bali Nine pair until the very last second.

Their brother had told them that he and Andrew were going to take care of the other seven prisoners before their deaths.

“We’ve spent the last few hours with my brother, we didn’t have much time,” Chintu said with his sobbing sister by his side.

“There was so many things to talk about, but we did talk about the death penalty.

“He (Myuran) knows this is just a waste, he knows this is not going to solve anything with drugs. He knows drug trafficking is still going to be there.

“if these nine people die today, tomorrow, next week, next months, it’s still not going to stop anything.”

Chintu asked the president and Indonesian people to show mercy.

“Please don’t let my mum and my sister have to bury my brother. Please,” Chinthu said.

Myuran’s sister Brintha Sukumaran, who earlier had to be carried through a mob of media before visiting the men on Nusakambangan, leaned on her brother’s shoulder and begged for their older sibling not to be shot.

“Please, please I beg you,” she said.

Bishop: ‘executions appear certain’

Short of a last-minute intervention by Mr Widodo, it appears certain the executions of Chan and Sukumaran will proceed, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said.

Ms Bishop said the “ghastly process” in which families of the condemned men were mobbed by a voracious media pack showed how chaotic this whole process had been.

She said Australia’s embassy in Jakarta had again made representations for clemency to the Indonesian government.

“I fear the very worst for our citizens,” she said in a press conference Tuesday night.

Ms Bishop said Australia’s ambassador in Jakarta had been seeing whoever he could and representations were continuing.

“They have not responded to any of our requests and there are a number of outstanding requests to which we have still not yet received a response. I’m obviously very dismayed by what has gone on in recent weeks,” she said.

Though Indonesia hasn’t yet provided the formal notification Ms Bishop requested from Indonesian foreign minister Retno Marsudi on Sunday, the drug smugglers are expected to be executed at midnight on Tuesday.

Ms Bishop warned of consequences against Indonesia if it proceeded with the execution.

But she would not say what they might be.

“Of course there will be have to be consequences – but I don’t want to go into the details,” Ms Bishop said.

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