The Act of the Indonesian Government against Human Rights and Democracy : It Abstain again in the UN Resolution on North Korea
The Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS) deplored the attitude of Indonesian Government who abstain again during the vote of the UN General Assembly on the situation of human rights in North Korea, November 14th 2014. The selection of the “abstain” attitude in the voting implies that Indonesian Government does not respond seriously toward allegations of crimes against humanity in North Korea, which occurs in a very long time, systematic, and widespread. We believe that Indonesia does not play a strategic role that should be done, both in the multilateral and bilateral arena to be able to stop the gross human rights violations that occurred in North Korea.
The re-election of Indonesia as a member of UN Human Rights Council 2014-2017 for the fourth time in October should be able to strengthen the position of Indonesia to fight for democracy and human rights beyond national borders, including for serious human rights violations in North Korea. But the “abstain” attitude taken by Indonesia along with 54 other countries, is a contradiction of Indonesia's struggle to promote and protect human rights under the rules of national, regional (ASEAN Human Rights Declaration), and also international – as a member of the UN Human Rights Council.
We assess the importance of draft resolution on the human rights situation in North Korea, which contains the pressure for North Korean Government to respect fundamental human rights of its citizens, among others, to put an end to gross human rights violations which are already widespread and systematic, in accordance with the recommendation of the Human Rights Council, Human Rights Committee, UN General Assembly, as well as the Commission of Inquiry.
The resolution was based on the occurrence of torture, extra-judicial killing, rape, and other forms of violations that occurred in the prison camp and occurs outside the bounds of humanity according to the report of the Commission of Inquiry.
The international community, including Indonesia should be able to be more assertive on North Korea's inability to respect, fulfill, and protect the human rights of its citizens.
Bilateral relations between Indonesia and North Korea are going well so far should not make Indonesia hesitate to act supporting the resolution issued by the General Assembly as one of the measures for the promotion and protection of human rights in North Korea.
We deplore the tolerant attitude of the Indonesian Government to North Korea in terms of gross human rights violations that occurred in the territory. The attitude of Indonesia reflected in the last two years are likely to put aside the issue of human rights, and uphold the interests of the economy, including; First, Indonesia's diplomatic visit to North Korea in 2013, went without the discussing human rights and democracy issues and only discuss the economic interests; Second, Indonesia abstained on the UN Human Rights Council resolution on the 25th March 2014, and returned abstained on the 69th session of the General Assembly on the situation of human rights in North Korea in November 2014, it is indicate the weakness of Indonesia's commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights in international level.
Referring to those facts above, we would like to urge the Government of Indonesia to show the full commitment and a firmer stance in support of the promotion and protection of human rights in North Korea, both in a subsequent resolution on North Korea, as well as in bilateral relations between Indonesia and North Korea to not only uphold the interests of the economic and closing eyes on gross human rights violations that occurred in the country.
Jakarta, November 28th 2014
Executive Coordinator of KontraS
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