President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's instruction last week to law enforcers to shoot drug traffickers to combat what he called a narcotics emergency facing the nation, has drawn sharp criticism from rights activists.

Some have suggested that the president should take his cues from more sources than only the country's all-powerful National Narcotics Agency (BNN) to formulate a more humane drug policy.

Usman Hamid, Indonesia country director for the United Kingdom-based rights group Amnesty International, likened Jokowi's "shoot-on-sight" order to Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's alleged tactic in his war on drugs. "Duterte's war on drugs is the wrong kind of approach for a democratic country. Indonesia must look for a better approach or best practices from other countries," Usman told the Jakarta Globe on July 23.

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