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Jakarta Post

‘Santet’, ‘adat’ law and Criminal Code revision

  • Joeni Arianto Kurniawan

Surabaya   /   Mon, April 1 2013   /  10:40 am

Currently, public attention is drawn to the controversy over the draft revision of the Dutch-made Criminal Code now being deliberated at the House of Representatives. Regardless of the House’s much criticized plan to conduct a “comparative study” in Europe related to the bill, its substance, if compared with the old Dutch criminal code, is controversial indeed.

Some of the contentious articles concern punishment for those practicing “black magic” (Article 293) which is commonly presumed to be a way to criminalize santet (Indonesian witchcraft), punishment for “blasphemy over religion” (Articles 341-345), punishment for adultery (Article 483) and punishment for “insult against the government that might create unrest in the community” (Articles 284-285). There are also articles concerning “crime against the state”, in which one of them criminalizes any conduct...