Death Penalty in Indonesia: Utopia or Reality?

  • Abdul Jalil Salam UIN Ar-Raniry, Indonesia
  • Zahlul Pasha Karim UIN Ar-Raniry, Indonesia


Historically, Indonesia's death penalty does not originate from religious doctrine, but a series of democratization processes agreed upon by legislators. Amidst these processes, there are two competing opinions in responding to Indonesia's death penalty, retentionist and abolitionist. This paper aims to answer why Indonesia's death penalty still exists and remains to be applied though it results in contention. Thus, this paper clarifies existing opinions by collecting data from laws and regulations, books, articles, and other related documentation studies. The data were analyzed in three steps, inter alia, unitization, comparison, and conclusion. This paper shows that the death penalty remains relevant to be applied in Indonesia despite the long struggle of its rejection. This paper concludes that Indonesia's imposition of the death penalty is regarded as worth defending, with specific and selective applications. The specific application means that the death penalty is applicable for corruptors, drug dealers, terrorists, gross human rights violators, and premeditated murders. Selective application means that a convict sentenced to death must be convincingly proven in court with a level of accuracy considered and accepted in the legal sense.

KEYWORDS: Death Penalty, Indonesian Law, Retentionist, Abolitionist.

How to Cite
SALAM, Abdul Jalil; KARIM, Zahlul Pasha. Death Penalty in Indonesia: Utopia or Reality?. Lentera Hukum, [S.l.], v. 8, n. 1, mar. 2021. ISSN 2621-3710. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 13 may 2021. doi:

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