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Jakarta Post

Government advised to resolve 1965 case after mob attack on YLBHI

  • Margareth S. Aritonang

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, September 18, 2017   /   02:34 pm
Government advised to resolve 1965 case after mob attack on YLBHI Family members of those massacred in 1965 pour flowers over a grave to pray for the departed spirits. (KOMPAS/*)

The mob attack on the Foundation of the Indonesian Legal Aid Institute (YLBHI) is a reminder of the need to reconcile perpetrators and victims of the 1965 communist purge, the nation’s rights body has said.

National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) chairman Nur Kholis argued that unresolved cases of past abuses, particularly the 1965 mass killings, had made the country vulnerable to social conflict.

 “The incident at the YLBHI office shows us this,” Nur Kholis told The Jakarta Post on Monday. “We urgently need to discuss how to achieve national reconciliation”.

A mob consisting of anti-communists besieged the YLBHI office on Sunday night on false allegations that a discussion and music performance held inside the building was attended by supporters of the now defunct Indonesian Communist Party.

Tensions escalated when the mob tried to get inside and disrupt the meeting. The police were forced to evacuate the participants to the headquarters of Komnas HAM.

Last year, the government set up a team comprising the Office of the Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister, the Law and Human Rights Ministry, the Attorney General’s Office and Komnas HAM to seek solutions to past human rights abuses. The team was unable to achieve any kind of reconciliation for the country. (ary)