Annual Report: Indonesia 2013

May 23, 2013

Annual Report: Indonesia 2013

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For a third successive year, Parliament failed to debate and enact a domestic workers law, leaving domestic workers, the vast majority of whom are women and girls, vulnerable to economic exploitation and the denial of their rights to fair conditions of work, health and education. Although Indonesia ratified the 1990 International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families in May, a lack of adequate legal protection in the country exposed migrant domestic workers, mostly women and girls, to trafficking, forced labour practices and other human rights abuses in Indonesia and overseas.


There was little progress in delivering justice, truth and reparation for past human rights violations, including in Aceh, Papua and Timor-Leste (formerly East Timor). Survivors of sexual violence had yet to receive adequate medical, psychological, sexual and reproductive, and mental health services or treatment. In September, the Indonesian government announced at the UN Human Rights Council that they were finalizing a new law on a Truth and Reconciliation Commission; however, no progress was reported. A multi-agency team set up by the President in 2011 to devise a plan to resolve past human rights violations had yet to announce any concrete plans.

  • In July, Komnas HAM submitted its report to the Attorney General on possible crimes against humanity committed against members of the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) and suspected communist sympathizers in the context of the 1965 failed coup. The Commission called on the Attorney General to initiate an official investigation, to bring the perpetrators to justice in a Human Rights Court and to establish a truth and reconciliation commission. No progress was reported.
  • In September, the Acehnese provincial parliament announced a delay to setting up an Aceh truth and reconciliation commission. This left victims and their families without an official mechanism to establish the truth about the violations they suffered during the conflict or to establish the fate or whereabouts of their loved ones who were killed or had disappeared.
  • The President failed to act on Parliament's recommendations in 2009 to bring to justice those involved in the enforced disappearance of 13 pro-democracy activists in 1997 and 1998, to conduct an immediate search for activists who had disappeared, and provide rehabilitation and compensation to their families.
  • The government failed to implement recommendations made by the bilateral Indonesia-Timor-Leste Commission of Truth and Friendship, in particular to establish a commission for disappeared persons tasked with identifying the whereabouts of all Timor-Leste children who were separated from their parents and notifying their families.

Death penalty

For a fourth successive year no executions were reported. However, at least 12 death sentences were handed down during the year and at least 130 people remained under sentence of death. In a positive move in October, it was reported that the Supreme Court had commuted the death sentence of a drug trafficker in August 2011, citing the death penalty as a violation of human rights and the Constitution. Also in October, it was announced that the President had commuted 19 death sentences between 2004 and 2011.

Amnesty International visits/reports

  • Amnesty International delegates visited Indonesia in April, May and October.
  • Stalled reforms: Impunity, discrimination and security force violations in Indonesia – Amnesty International Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review, May-June 2012 (ASA 21/003/2012)
  • Excessive force: Impunity for police violence in Indonesia (ASA 21/010/2012)
  • Indonesia: Briefing to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (ASA 21/022/2012)