The TPF report should be published
The 2005 report by the Factfinding Team (Tim Pencari Fakta, TPF) on the murder of human rights defender Munir Said Thalib in 2004 has to be published by the Indonesian goverment. This was the judgment in October 2016 by the Public Information Commission, an independent body deciding on the transparency of governmental information. The State Secretariat that is responsible for the Presidential procedures quickly announced the TPF report had got lost since 2005. The report is supposed to contain information that can be considered as new evidence, sufficient to re-open the investigation and eventual prosecution of the alleged perpetrators of the murder of Munir on 6 September 2004.
Suciwati, widow of the late human rights campaigner Munir Said Thalib, proudly shows off a street sign honoring her late husband in Jakarta on April 11, 2015. The Hague city administration officially named a street after Munir on April 14, 2015. (Antara/Reno Esnir)
IPT 1965 Verdict published
In a strong voice Judge Zak Yacoob spoke the words so many victims of the 1965 tragedy had been waiting for so long. The Verdict of the International People's Tribunal 1965 (IPT 1965) considers the State of Indonesia responsible for crimes against humanity committed in the period 1965/1966 and the years after. These crimes include killings, enslavement, imprisonment, torture, sexual violence, persecution, enforced disappearances and hate propaganda. The Verdict also considers foreign states, specifically USA, UK and Australia complicit of these crimes. The verdict notes that possibly those crimes can also be considered to fall within the definition of genocide.
Jokowi and his exiled compatriots
by Aboeprijadi Santoso (The Jakarta Post, 28-04-2016)
On 22 April 2016 in The Hague, President Jokowi has been confronted with a drama at home and what is left of it abroad: the fate of Indonesian exiles since 1965. In 2000 Gus Dur met with exiles, calling them “wandering heroes”, but he was not able to restore their civil rights. Yudhoyono, who enjoyed being among the world’s top Who’s-Who, never really showed much concern for them. Jokowi, a simple man who’s not shy about his simplicity, likes to listen to people’s concerns. Taking a break from his business agenda, he approached his compatriots in the streets, talked at a hotel and visited Indonesian students in Leiden. Unfortunately, there was no chance given to this first president with no link to the New Order regime to meet exiled compatriots at exactly the same time his government at home was sponsoring a historic symposium to publicly discuss, for the first time, the tragic impact of the 1965 genocide. The Indonesian Embassy in The Hague apparently failed to see the significance of the opportunity for President Jokowi, who has promised to resolve the 1965 tragedy, to meet with exiles and compatriots concerned with the continuing impunity. But for Tante Cisca.
New verdicts and study on Dutch 1945-1949 responsibility
On 27 January 2016 the (local) court of justice in The Hague has issued three verdicts related to (so-called) “misbehaviour” by Dutch soldiers during the independence war (1945-1949). The state is held accountable for a case of the rape of an 18-year old girl who was raped by five Dutch soldiers in Peniwen (East Java) in 1949, and was ordered to offer a compensation of € 7500 to the woman.
In the autumn of 2016 the historical PhD-study by Rémy Limpach, entitled "De Brandende Kampongs van Generaal Spoor" was published in Dutch. The Dutch government decided to commission an independent study by three institutes into the human rights abuses during the Independence War (1945-1949).
Another verdict is related to extrajudicial executions in South Sulawesi in 1946 and 1947, whereby Robert Cribb was appointed as an external expert to investigate these executions. The court also orders the state to open the national archive for this investigation and to bring forward its own investigations.
A third verdict relates to torture of a man who was taken prisoner in 1947. The state of The Netherlands is ordered to clarify why it can denounce the facts and to come forward with its own investigation results on the case.
Early 2017 the Dutch paper NRCHandelsblad disclosed a procedure in 1953 by the widow of an Indonesian citizen who had been extrajudicially executed in 1948 in Kaliurang (Central Java). The widow, originally Dutch, was awarded a compensation of nearly 150,000 Dutch guilders. The victim, Masdoelhak Nasoetion was an advisor to then President Soekarno.