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Indonesia fails to address major human rights issues: Coalition

Jakarta Post - April 7, 2017

Safrin La Batu, Jakarta Indonesia has not yet improved its policies on the promotion and protection of human rights, despite the evaluations in 2008 and 2012 of the United Nations-sponsored Universal Periodic Review (UPR), a coalition of civil society groups has said.

The Civil Society Coalition for the Third UPR said Indonesia agreed to receive 150 of the 180 recommendations issued by the UPR in 2012 that highlighted major human rights violations in the country and provide ways to address the problems.

"The government has not held a formal, open and participatory mechanism to follow up on the recommendations. We see the government has not executed most of the recommendations," the coalition said in a statement sent from Geneva, Switzerland.

Among the issues highlighted in the 2012 recommendations were 20 regarding freedom of religion. The UPR said mob violence involving hard-line Islamic groups was still rampant in the country.

"A number of recommendations in the 2012 UPR have not been clearly, firmly and constitutionally implemented," said Elga Sarapung, who represents the Indonesian Interreligious Network (JAII), which is part of the coalition.

"The right to have a house of worship and the right to exercise beliefs, as well as to be free from intimidation and violence made in the name of religion, are not fully protected by the government," he added.

Besides freedom of religion, the coalition also highlighted a number of other human rights issues, such as foreign journalists being barred from entering Papua and Indonesia's death penalty for convicted drug traffickers.

The UPR third review on Indonesia will commence in Geneva next month. (ebf)

Source: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2017/04/07/indonesia-fails-to-address-major-human-rights-issues-coalition.html.

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