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Amid souring murder rates, Aceh considers beheading for capital crimes

Detik News - March 14, 2018

Agus Setyadi, ace – The Aceh Islam Law Office (DSI) is debating the application of Qisas – retributive justice – for perpetrators of crimes such as murder in order to push down crime rates which have been rising of late.

DSI Islamic Law and Human Rights Development chief Dr Syukri said that his office would first conduct research on the application of Qisas law in Aceh on university campuses.

DSI would also look at the level of public support for the law and society's readiness if the law is applied.

"Only after the research is completed will we increase efforts to draft an academic and legal text. We plan to conduct the research this year", Syukri told journalists on Wednesday March 14.

The number of murders cases in Aceh has indeed risen of late. According to Syukri, if Islamic law is properly and consistently applied, then crimes such as murder will disappear.

He gave as an example Saudi Arabia which has extremely firm and harsh punishments for perpetrators that take someone's life.

"If the punishment for murderers is very harsh, then people will restrain themselves from committing murder. If people are scared of taking a person's life then all human lives will be safe, as well as the person or perpetrator themselves", explained Syukri.

"In the Koran Allah stated that under Qisas law there is a guarantee to life for human beings. What is the meaning of a guarantee to life, it means that by applying Islamic law it will guarantee that no more lives will be taken. Why? Because people are afraid to kill. When a person is afraid to kill, other people are safe, and they [the perpetrator's] lives will also be saved", he said.

Syukri believes that the punishments handed down against murderers at the moment are too light, so after being released from prison it is not impossible that the they will again commit murder.

With the implementation of Qisas law perpetrators will be afforded the same legal process including an investigation, police investigation and so forth. Syukri is urging all parties not to be allergic to discourse about Qisas law.

"So it's still a discourse, we will first carry out research this year. We don't want it to be rash or all of a sudden because before applying such punishments we have to prepare society to accept it. It won't happen straight away and we will do it will full consideration", he said. (asp/asp)


Qisas is an Islamic term meaning "retaliation in kind" or "revenge", "eye for an eye", "nemesis" or retributive justice. It is a category of crimes in Islamic jurisprudence which allows equal retaliation as punishment. Although Syukri does not use the term "beheading" (pancung, which is used in the original title of the article) other reports in the Indonesian media make it clear that this is the punishment being considered by the DSI.

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was "Tekan Angka Pembunuhan, Aceh Akan Berlakukan Hukum Pancung".]

Source: https://news.detik.com/berita/d-3916498/tekan-angka-pembunuhan-aceh-akan-berlakukan-hukum-pancung