Jakarta, 17 August (AKI) - Celebrating Indonesia's independence day on Thursday, authorities have clipped the prison sentences of several people convicted of the 2002 Bali bombings, a move that allowed one of the 33 militants jailed for the attacks which killed 202 people to walk free.
The militant, Puryanto, was serving a five year sentence for helping shelter one of the key players in the attacks, Amrozi. Puryanto who insists he was not connected to the attacks, was freed after his sentence was cut by three months.
Two other militants in Balikpapan, and nine more in Bali's Kerobokan jail, each had their sentences cut by four months, officials said.
A total of 33 people were jailed for the 2002 Bali blasts and those receiving remissions played relatively minor roles in the suicide bombings - from carrying out robberies to financing the attacks to helping shelter the main suspects.
Amrozi, together with Gufron and Imam Samudra – two other militants convicted of playing key roles in the Bali bombings - were sentenced to death and their execution is expected to take place in the next few weeks.
Indonesia has a tradition of cutting prison sentenced on national holidays as well as religious feast days such as the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Some 54,000 - of whom 6,000 were freed - have benefitted from Thursday's independence day reductions.
But the jail sentence reductions have provoked angry reactions among relatives of the victims of the Bali bombings. Eighty-eight of those who died were Australian and authorities in Canberra have repeatedly criticised Jakarta for its apparent leniency in dealing with convicted terrorists.
Australians were outraged when Abu Bakar Bashir, considered to be the ideological leader of Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), the radical Islamic group which has been associated with the Bali bombings, had his sentence reduced.
Bashir who was sentenced to 30 months in prison for having "instigated" the Bali attacks, was released on 14 June after serving 25 months of the sentence.
place within us love that truly gives, tenderness that truly unites, self-offering that tells the truth and does not deceive, forgiveness that truly receives, loving physical union that welcomes