KUALA LUMPUR: Amnesty International said on Thursday that Malaysia was preparing to put a condemned woman to death, and called on the government to halt “yet another secretive execution.”
The London-based human rights group said in a statement it had learned from relatives of the woman that she would be executed Friday for a murder committed more than a decade ago. It identified her only by the name “Chandran.”
But Hindraf, a group that advocates for the rights of Malaysia’s ethnic Indian minority, said her name was Chandran Paskaran. Hindraf also called for her to be spared.
The government of Muslim-majority Malaysia does not announce executions and is generally tight-lipped about its application of the death penalty.
“Malaysian authorities must immediately halt plans to carry out yet another secretive execution,” Amnesty said in a statement.
The statement quoted Hazel Galang-Folli, Amnesty’s Malaysia researcher, saying the execution would be “an enormous step backwards on human rights.”
Government officials did not immediately respond to AFP queries.
An official said in 2012 that about 900 people were on death row, mostly for drug offences.
However, Malaysia is believed to have carried out few executions—which are done by hanging—in recent years.
In 2012, a government minister said it may reconsider a mandatory death sentence for drug trafficking, but nothing further has been announced.