Jakarta. Indonesia failed to address past human rights violations despite promises from top officials and commitments by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, a new report on Thursday (22/02) showed.
"This is one of President Jokowi's campaign promises that he has yet to fulfill, which is to resolve past human rights violations," Usman Hamid, executive director of Amnesty International Indonesia, said during a press conference in Jakarta.
In 2015, Jokowi announced that the government would form a reconciliation commission to address past human rights abuses, though it has yet to be seen in practice.
In fact, the Jakarta Administrative Court overturned a decision by the Public Information Commission to publish a report on the 2004 murder of human rights activist Munir Said Thalib, on the grounds that the current administration did not receive the report from its predecessor.
"In August, the Supreme Court upheld the Administrative Court’s decision," the report said.
In May, when Indonesia’s human rights record was examined under the United Nations Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process, the government promised that the Attorney General would finalize a criminal investigation into human rights violations in Wasior, West Papua, in 2001 and Wamena, Papua, in 2003.
The report published by Amnesty International – The State of the World’s Human Rights – noted that the government’s promises during the UPR have not been upheld by the end of last year.
Indonesia rejected, among other things, calls to investigate past human rights violations, during the UN review.
Concerns over impunity for perpetrators of past human rights abuses in Indonesia have also been part of the discussions rejecting current draft revisions to the country’s criminal code.
The National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) earlier this month suggested that extraordinary crimes will be better addressed in a separate regulation, instead of including it in the revised criminal code.
Furthermore, several incidents last year also point to a seemingly lack of understanding from authorities on the pursuit of justice in cases of human rights violations, such as the disruption and ban of events related to discussions of the 1965 violations in August and September.