ASIA: Failure to uphold truth and justice and prevent genocide would endanger the existence of human beings in future

An Oral Statement to the 37th Regular Session of the UN Human Rights Council by the Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC)

Mr. President.

The Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC) is concerned about the process of resolving the grives of the victims in Asian countries.

In Indonesia, President Joko Widodo has yet shown his seriousness in resolving past human rights abuses, This is contrary to the Nawa Cita, President Widodo’s vision and mission, which clearly states that he will ensure prosecution of past human rights abuses cases, and it also has a breakdown into a National Medium-Term Development Plan 2014-2019. Since 2003, seven cases of past human rights abuses submitted by the National Commission on Human Rights to the Attorney General (AG) for further investigation, as regulated by Law No 26 of 2000 on Human Rights Court, are sitting in the AG’s office with no further investigation undertaken. On the contrary, President Widodo has promoted and appointed several retired army generals allegedly involved in past human rights abuses as ministry cabinet members. Another alarming matter is the effort of former dictator Suharto’s political party, Golkar Party, to promote Suharto as a national hero. This can only endanger the future of human rights and democracy in Indonesia.

Spending two years ago, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappeared Persons (CIEDP) in Nepal has promulgated to investigate conflict-era cases. Their two-year mandate was extended on 9 February 2017 for one year. With this one-year extension, Commission members and conflict victims will continue to face confusion and uncertainty. The TRC has received 58,052 complaints related to human rights violations committed by the State and the Maoist rebels during the conflict period. The CIEDP has received 2,888 complaints. However, the Commission has not been able to speed up its work due to delay by the government in enacting and promulgating the required legislations. This has deferred justice for conflict survivors, whereas the Commissions have not been able to carry out their work effectively.

In Indian Kashmir numerous cases of enforced disappearances and extrajudicial executions have been committed for decades without addressing the grieves. In Sri Lanka the Missing persons Commission has just been named after long delay. Our active attentions are required to see the progress in the coming days.

Thank you, Mr. President.

UN Web TV Video Link: (Please scroll down on the list of speakers on the right hand side and click on clip number 33 to find Asian Legal Resource Centre)

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The Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC) works towards the radical rethinking & fundamental redesigning of justice institutions in Asia, to ensure relief and redress for victims of human rights violations, as per Common Article 2 of the International Conventions. Sister organisation to the Asian Human Rights Commission, the ALRC is based in Hong Kong & holds general consultative status with the Economic & Social Council of the United Nations.

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