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Jakarta Post

Past human rights cases get little attention in Jokowi's speech

  • Margareth S. Aritonang

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, August 16, 2018   /   03:20 pm
Past human rights cases get little attention in Jokowi's speech Maria Catarina Sumarsih holds an umbrella during the 536th "Kamisan", a weekly silent protest in front of the State Palace in Jakarta, on April 26. The protests have been held since 2007 to urge the government to resolve human rights abuse cases, including the 1998 Semanggi shooting, which resulted in the death of Maria’s son, Bernardus Realino Norma Irawan. (JP/Aditya Bhagas)

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has claimed his administration will keep its commitment to settle unsolved past human rights abuses without any elaboration on how to realize it.

“The government aims to resolve cases of past rights abuses and to improve protection of human rights to prevent similar cases from taking place in the future,” Jokowi said in his state of the nation address during a plenary session before lawmakers at the House of Representatives on Thursday.

He cited that the government would work based on a 2018 regulation stipulating the implementation of the national human rights action plan. However, he stopped short on how his administration would settle the prolonged unsolved cases as he will reach the end of his term next year.

Jokowi had included the settlement of past abuses cases in his top priority agenda during his presidential campaign and after he officially took office in 2014.

There are six major human rights violations, namely the 1965 communist purge, the 1989 Talangsari incident in Central Lampung, the 2001 and 2003 Wamena and Wasior incidents in Papua, various kidnappings and unresolved shootings in the 1980s, the May 1998 riots and the disappearances of activists that remain unresolved.

Activists have lambasted Jokowi and his administration’s slow progress to settle the abuses and take the perpetrators to court nearing the end of his term in office.