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By Kanupriya Kapoor CILACAP, Indonesia (Reuters) - Relatives of several convicts on death row in Indonesia made emotional last-ditch appeals for mercy on Sunday, adding their voices to foreign governments and the head of the United Nations who called for the group of nine to be spared the firing squad. Indonesia this weekend informed the group of drug-crime convicts, which includes nationals from Brazil, France, Ghana, Nigeria, the Philippines and Australia, that they would be executed in a matter of days, possibly as soon as Tuesday. The appeals for clemency were directed at President Joko Widodo, whose determination to deal harshly with drug crimes has won popular support at home. "There are nine people with families that love them ... so we ask the president to use his powers to intervene and save their lives," Chintu Sukumaran told reporters after visiting his Australian brother, Myuran, at a high-security jail on Nusakambangan Island in West Java.
Syrian jets carried out at least 20 air strikes on the town of Jisr al-Shughour in northwestern Syria on Sunday, a group monitoring the war said, one day after it was seized by Islamist fighters closing in on government-held territory by the coast. Syrian state television said the military had ambushed some militants close to Jisr al-Shughour, which was captured on Saturday for the first time in the four-year conflict by a hardline Islamist alliance including al-Qaeda. Syrian television also reported that the insurgents had slaughtered civilians, but the Observatory said only government supporters had been detained and no one killed. "Terrorist groups committed a horrific massacre of civilians after entering Jisr al-Shughour," state television quoted a military source as saying.
BALTIMORE (AP) — A protest over the death of Freddie Gray, who was critically injured in police custody, started peacefully with thousands marching through downtown streets before the demonstration turned violent and volatile.