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Democracy without Human Rights Enforcement is a Meaningless Democracy

Political transition in Indonesia is a complex and fragile transition. The transition not only shows maintained impunity structure but also meaningless democracy politics.

We see that the coalition of the 2009 election contestant were based only for the lust of power without commitment to enforce Human Rights as a basic element of democracy. The emergence of Prabowo and Wiranto as Vice Presidential candidates in 2009 election was perceive as a form of low commitment from coalition actor towards Human Rights enforcement. Because those person are strongly suspected responsible for the past Human Rights gross violations; Activist kidnapping, Trisakti, Semanggi I and II, May Riot 98, East Timor Case. All these cases are a crime against humanity where recognition of  responsibility is a must.

As a State based on law, legal process to solved those case is a must. Impunity must be ended in a democracy system. Because, impunity practice not only indicates state’s failure in upholding accountability, but also threatening the future direction of democratic transition. At this point, SBY-JK government along with the Parliament have large contribution in maintaining those crimes, because up to their final period, state’s responsibility mechanism is still absent.

Those situation had placed democracy in a crossroad. General Election 2009 were not only a means to protect Human Rights violations, but also strengthening the impunity structure well maintained.

We condemn the State authority that deliberately maintain impunity and also condemn politician that gave space for individuals strongly suspected responsible for Human Rights gross violations in the past as their Vice Presidential candidates.

We redress the public to emphasize the track records and Human Rights commitment of the candidates in the 2009 election. By making Human Rights as a base for voting preference in Election 2009, may our democracy be survived. Rejecting them to became public officials is a choice between existing impunity gap. The public must aware that forgetting crimes in the past will ends in a similar crimes in the future. And neglecting the track record of Human Rights violators will not deter them from repeating their action.


Jakarta, 19 May 2009
Coalition of Indonesian Human Rights Defender (Koalisi Pejuang HAM Indonesia)