Protesters hope for lasting reprieve for Frenchman facing execution

PARIS (AFP) - Some 200 people who gathered in Paris on Saturday to protest Indonesia's planned execution of foreign drug convicts said they hoped for a lasting reprieve for a Frenchman granted a temporary stay.

Indonesia earlier said it had notified eight foreigners they would be executed but that France's Serge Atlaoui would not go before a firing squad with the group as he still has an outstanding appeal.

"I'm torn between immense relief... and at the same time anguish at knowing the others may be executed on the 28th," said Atlaoui's French lawyer Richard Sedillot.

"He is still on death row, he hasn't yet been saved," he added.

The protesters shouted "Hope" and "Serge" as they waved pictures of the Frenchman, who has consistently denied wrongdoing.

Among the crowd were members of Amnesty International, rights groups and opponents of the death penalty as well as Indonesian-born French singer Anggun.

The news of Atlaoui's temporary reprieve came after France dramatically stepped up pressure on Jakarta to change course, with President Francois Hollande warning Saturday of "consequences with France and Europe" if he was put to death.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.