JAKARTA - Bali governor Made Mangku Prastika said he is optimistic Bali's tourism industry will not be affected by soured diplomatic relations between Jakarta and Canberra over the imminent execution of two Australian drug smugglers, the Jakarta Post reported on Friday.
"Do the Australians want to boycott Bali? Do the Australians want to not be able to visit Bali? I do not think that the impact to tourism in Bali will be significant with regards to this case," Made was quoted by the report as saying in Denpasar.
Myuran Sukumaran, 33, and Andrew Chan, 31, were sentenced to death in 2006 as the ringleaders of the so-called Bali Nine, a year after the gang's arrest in 2005 for trying to smuggle more than 8kg of heroin from Bali to Australia.
The two men were transferred from a Bali prison to one on Nusakambangan Island, off Central Java, on Wednesday in preparation for their execution, despite vigorous appeals for clemency by Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop.
The transfer sparked more outrage in Australia, after a smiling Denpasar police chief commissioner Djoko Hari Utomo was photographed apparently posing with his hand on the back of a seated Chan, who was ashen-faced, as well as on Sukumaran, who was looking up at him, onboard the plane.