1965 mass killings justified:

Djoko Suyanto: Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister: (Kompas/Riza Fathoni)
Djoko Suyanto: Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister: (Kompas/Riza Fathoni)

Coordinating Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Minister Djoko Suyanto has rejected the findings by the National Commission on Human Rights' (Komnas HAM) investigative team that the 1965 purge was a gross human rights violation.

"Define gross human rights violation! Against whom? What if it happened the other way around?" Djoko said on the sidelines of a meeting with the House of Representatives' Budget Committee on Monday.

Djoko indicated that the mass killing during the anti-communist purge was justified as it was aimed at saving the country.

"This country would not be what it is today if it didn't happen. Of course there were victims [during the purge], and we are investigating them," Djoko added.

After a thorough investigation over nearly four years, Komnas HAM finally declared the killings in the 1965 purge a state-sponsored gross human rights violation.

The investigation found that widespread mass killings had occurred during the period and featured similar patterns, starting with victims being arrested and detained in military camps, where they were interrogated, tortured, raped or murdered.

Following its investigation, Komnas HAM recommended the government set up a committee for Reconciliation and Truth, apart from a presidential apology to families of victims as well as the survivors.

However, according to Djoko, such a recommendation was unreasonable due to the lack of a legal basis.

"We can't do that because the Constitutional Court has revoked the law on truth and reconciliation," he said.(iwa)

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