Napalm Death frontman Barney Greenway has pleaded with Indonesia’s metalhead president to save two drug smugglers from execution.
President Joko Widodo is a passionate heavy metal fan and counts Napalm Death as one of his favourite bands. And when Greenaway heard of the plight of two Australians who were sentenced to death by an Indonesian court, he was moved to write to Widodo.
Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran are on death row after begin convicted of attempting to smuggle heroin into Indonesia in 2005. According to reports, they could be executed within the next few weeks after being denied the chance for a judicial review of their sentences.
Greenway’s letter to the president reads: “Dear Mr Widodo, I am appealing directly to you to please spare the lives of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, the two Australian citizens who are currently awaiting the death sentence in Indonesia for heroin smuggling.
“As a follower of our band Napalm Death, you would appreciate that our lyrics and ethos challenge the unbroken cycle of violence in the world, whether it comes from a state or as an individual. If these things are not challenged and ultimately changed, I believe we will never truly move forward as humankind.
“I understand that you are standing as a leader determined to change things for the better, and so I believe granting clemency would be a major step forward in this pursuit of betterment. I appreciate that heroin can be damaging on many levels, but I believe that this is a much deeper issue that cannot be changed or altered by simply taking away the lives of people.
“Again, I respectfully ask that you make a real difference and overturn these sentences.”
It is not clear whether the president has yet replied.
Napalm Death have long been outspoken on a number of political issues and are passionate in their championing of liberal causes. Their new album Apex Predator – Easy Meat was released this month and bassist Shane Embury says its message is that “modern day slavery is alive, well and obscured” by the greed of big business.