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Jakarta Post

Komnas HAM, Army retirees discuss 1965 reconciliation

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sat, March 18, 2017   /   12:25 pm
Komnas HAM, Army retirees discuss 1965 reconciliation A dark chapter of history -- Maj. Gen. Soeharto briefs members of the Army’s Special Forces (RPKAD, now Kopassus) prior to the removal of the bodies of the Army generals who were murdered during an alleged coup attempt on Sept. 30, 1965, which was blamed on the now defunct Indonesian Communist Party (PKI). As the most senior military officer available at the time, Soeharto led all the operations to restore security and impose order in the aftermath of the alleged aborted coup.(JP/30 Tahun Indonesia Merdeka/-) (JP/30 Tahun Indonesia Merdeka/-)

National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) commissioners visited the Association of Army Retirees (PPAD) office on Friday to ask for the opinions of the association’s members on the best solutions for reconciliation with 1965 tragedy victims.

Komnas HAM commissioner, Nur Kholis, said the meeting, which was initiated by the commission, was conducted as part of efforts to solve past abuses. He said the PPAD was chosen as a dialogue partner because many of its members had witnessed the 1965 tragedy.

"Our discussion was focused on how to solve gross human rights violations, especially the 1965 tragedy,” Nur Kholis said. He added that Komnas HAM would also ask for opinions on the same issue from several other organizations, including the Veterans Association (Pepabri).

The commissioner said the PPAD had suggested that reconciliation be reached through a non-judicial process.

“It can be achieved through a non-judicial process but it will take a long time. To make that happen, there should be a national consensus agreed on by both 1965 victims and the Indonesian Military,” he said.

PPAD spokesperson, retired Army general Kiki Syahnakri, said the best solution for the reconciliation was through natural reconciliation process. He pointed to the removal of ex political detainee marks on identity cards (KTP) as an example of what he called natural reconciliation.

“[...] If we take a judicial approach in handling the case, it will open up an old wound that could lead to bloodshed,” he said. (rdi/ebf)