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From ETAN Blog:

SBY Is No Statesman!

Peaceful Picket
Thursday, May 30, 2013, 5:30-7:30pm
The Pierre Hotel, 2 E 61st St., New York City

Oppose the World Statesman Award to President Yudhoyono from the Appeal of Conscience Foundation

contact ETAN for more information

Bring your own signs and banners highlighting the ongoing human rights issues in Indonesia, including attacks on religious freedom,
lack of justice for past human rights violations,
and ongoing rights abuses in West Papua and elsewhere.

Event on Facebook

(Should the Appeal of Conscience Foundation withdraw the award,
we will hold a celebration outside the hotel.)

Map

Download, print and distribute flyer promoting demonstration (PDF)

Petisi kepada Rabbi Arthur Schneier

Urge the Appeal of Conscience Foundation to Withdraw World Statesman Award to Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono

Petition to Appeal of Conscience Foundation


President Susilo Bambang YudhoyonoWe, the undersigned urge the Appeal of Conscience Foundation to withdraw its World Statesman Award to Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. This award shocks our conscience.

On May 6, 2013, in Jakarta, a coalition of victims of religious discrimination and human rights groups in Indonesia urged the foundation to drop its plan to give the award. We support this call.

The foundation says that it works "on behalf of religious freedom and human rights throughout the world" and "promotes peace, tolerance and ethnic conflict resolution."

It is regrettable that the foundation is so ready to bestow such an award without first seriously examining the situation in the country to see if the recipient truly merits the award.

In Indonesia there is continuing religious violence, governmental inaction, and official impunity. Giving President Yudhoyono the World Statesman Award dishonors to both the foundation and mocks its recipient.

Under President Yudhoyono’s leadership, religious intolerance in Indonesia has escalated. Houses of worship have been attacked and the followers of religious minority faiths have faced discrimination, assault and worse. Police and public officials often refuse to stand up to the intolerant bullies. Sometimes they take the side of the attackers, using their office to spread bigotry and enforce discrimination.

President Yudhoyono has established an unprecedented discriminatory legal infrastructure in Indonesia. He has issued a discriminatory regulations, defended the blasphemy law at the Constitutional Court, and promulgated a decree threatening to five years in jail for anyone who “propagates” the Ahmadiyah teaching.

In recent years conflict and repression have escalated in West Papua, where its indigenous people face discrimination in their own land. At the end of April, there were at least 40 Papuan political prisoners.

Under President Yudhoyono leadership, impunity continues for past crimes against humanity and war crimes. Police and military often act with limited accountability throughout the archipelago.

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Background

The Appeal of Conscience Foundation plans to give the award to President Yudhoyono on May 30 in New York City.

When President Yudhoyono first took office, he promised that his administration would promote human rights and tolerance. Nine years later, the prospects for accountability for past rights violations have receded; religious intolerance has grown. Indonesia’s security forces have become increasingly abusive in West Papua. Police and soldiers who violate human rights are rarely held accountable. Serious human rights violations by members of the military are tried in military courts where soldiers, if convicted, receive light sentences.

Recent examples of religious persecution include the March 21 demolition of the HKBP Taman Sari church in Bekasi after an order from the regional government. Four Ahmadiyya places of worship were closed within a month in West Java. Last August, members of the Shia community in Sampang, East Java, were forced from their homes members of the majority Sunni attacked them for so-called blasphemy. They continue to struggle in a makeshift camp in a sports stadium.

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In 2006, President Yudhoyono issued a regulation on building houses of worship that makes it extremely difficult for religious minorities to construct their buildings. He signed a law that allows the listing of only six religions on Indonesian ID cards, basically discriminating against more than 350 other small religions. In 2009, Yudhoyono sent his cabinet members to defend the blasphemy law when it was challenged at the Constitutional Court. They mobilized Muslim militias to harass the petitioners and their lawyers. In April 2010, the Constitutional Court upheld the law, which provides criminal penalties for those who express religious beliefs that deviate from the six officially-recognized religions. The court said it is lawful to restrict minority beliefs because it allows for the “maintenance of public order.” In 2008, Yudhoyono issued an anti-Ahmadiyah decree, threatening to five years jail term for anyone who “propagates” the group’s teachings.

An ad hoc tribunal to investigate and prosecute the 1997-98 the disappearance of human rights activists has yet to be established, though it has been approved by the legislature. Yudhoyono's own coordinating minister for political, legal, and security affairs and Attorney General have rejected the official human rights commission's findings that the government's anti-Communist purges of 1965 and 1966 - which included mass killings of up to one million people, enslavement, torture, rape, and enforced disappearance - constituted a crime against humanity. The truth commission and human rights courts authorized by the 2006 law on Aceh have yet to be established. There has been no accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Indonesian forces in Timor-Leste, where as many as 183,000 were killed, or West Papua, where an estimated 100,000 have died

On taking office, President Yudhoyono declared that solving the September 2004 murder of Munir Said Thalib, Indonesia’s best known human rights activist, would be a test of "whether Indonesia had changed." The President and Indonesia have failed the test. He has refused to release the report of the fact-finding team he set up early in his Presidency. The murder involved the national intelligence agency and serving and former military officers; none of them have been brought to justice.

Protesters march to the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, on 6 May

Additional Background

Human Rights Watch, In Religions Name Abuses against Religious Minorities in Indonesia

East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN), Human Rights & Justice page

Amnesty International: Victims of the Aceh conflict still waiting for truth, justice and reparation

Human Rights Watch Indonesia: Civilian Courts Should Try Abusive Soldiers

Setara Institute, Reports on Freedom of Religion and Belief in Indonesia

United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, 2013 annual report 

US Department of State, Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2012 - Indonesia

US Department of State, International Religious Freedom Report for 2012 - Indonesia

Criticisms of the Award (a selection)

Jakarta Post, Yudhoyono award deemed PR stunt (May 23)

Jakarta Post, Rights groups reject religious freedom award for Yudhoyono (May 7)

The Jewish Daily Forward, Why Did Jewish Group Give Award to Indonesian Blamed for Fanning Hatred? Rights Advocates Slam Arthur Schneier's Honor for President (May 21)

KontraS, KontraS Believes SBY Not Deserving of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation World Statesman Award because of Ongoing, State-Supported, Religious Intolerance in Indonesia (May 2)

Letters to Appeal of Conscience Foundation Opposing Award to President Yudhoyono from Two Churches Under Attack in Indonesia

Secular groups criticise "World Statesmen Award" for Indonesian President

Tablet, New York Rabbi’s Awful Award: Why is a Jewish group dedicated to tolerance honoring a politician who has failed to support religious minorities?  (May 21)  

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Petisi kepada Rabbi Arthur Schneier

SBY bukan “World Statesman” (Negarawan Dunia) – Batalkan Penghargaan untuk Presiden Indonesia: Seruan kepada Appeal of Conscience Foundation untuk membatalkan penganugerahan World Statesman Award.

Petisi oleh: East Timor and Indonesia Action Network

Ketika Presiden Yudhoyon pertama kali menjabat, ia berjanji bahwa pemerintahannya akan memajukan hak-hak asasi manusia dan meningkatkan toleransi. Sembilan tahun kemudian, tidak ada pertanggungjawaban atas pelanggaran hak-hak asasi di masa lalu; intoleransi agama malah meningkat. Kekuatan bersenjata Indonesia menjadi semakin sewenang-wenang di Papua. Polisi dan tentara yang melakukan pelanggaran hak-hak asasi manusia jarang sekali harus mempertanggungjawabkan perbuatannya. Pelanggaran berat hak-hak asasi manusia yang dilakukan oleh anggota militer diadili di pengadilan militer dimana tentara pada umumnya mendapat hukuman yang sangat ringan.

Catatan ini membuat Presiden Yudhoyono tidak pantas mendapat anugerah dari sebuah organisasi yang mendukung toleransi agama dan penegakan hak-hak asasi manusia.

Lihat selengkapnya disini: http://www.etan.org/action/action2/sby_award.htm

Sebuah aksi unjuk rasa (demonstrasi) akan diadakan pada tanggal 30 Mei di New York City jika pemberian penghargaan ini tidak dibatalkan. Lebih lanjut, silahkan kontak: etan@etan.org.

Kepada Yth.

Rabbi Arthur Schneier, President, Appeal of Conscience Foundation

Seruan kepada Conscience Foundation untuk membatalkan penganugerahan World Statesman Award

Kami, yang bertandatangan di bawah ini menyerukan kepada Appeal of Conscience Foundation (selanjutnya A of C Foundation)  untuk membatalkan pemberian penghargaan World Statesman Award kepada Presiden Indonesia President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. Pemberian penghargaan ini mengguncangkan hati nurani (conscience) kami. Pada tanggal 6 Mei di Jakarta, sebuah koalisi korban-korban diskriminasi agama dan kelompok-kelompok hak-hak asasi manusia di Indonesia telah menyerukan kepada A of C Foundation untuk membatalkan rencananya memberikan penghargaan ini. Kami mendukung seruan mereka.

A of C Foundation menyebutkan bahwa ia berjuang “untuk kebebasan beragama dan hak-hak asasi manusia di seluruh dunia” dan “memajukan perdamaian, toleransi dan penyelesaian konflik etnik.”

Sangatlah disayangkan bahwa A of C Foundation telah terburu-buru memberikan penghargaan ini tanpa sebelumnya menyelidiki keadaan di dalam negeri Indonesia untuk melihat apakah penerimanya sungguh-sungguh layak untuk mendapatkan penghargaan.

Kekerasan atas nama agama terus berlanjut di Indonesia, pemerintahnya berdiam diri, dan impunitas menjadi kebijakan resmi. Memberikan World Statesman Award kepada Presiden Yudhoyono sama dengan merendahkan martabat A of C Foundation dan mengolok-olok penerima-penerima lainnya.

Di bawah kepemimpinan Presiden Yudhoyono, intolerasni agama di Indonesia meningkat dengan pesat. Rumah-rumah ibadah diserang dan para pengikut agama-agama minoritas menghadapi diskriminasi, penyerangan, dan banyak hal yang lebih buruk lagi. Polisi dan pejabat-pejabat publik seringkali tidak mau menghadapi pihak-pihak penyerang. Seringkali mereka justru memihak para penyerang, dan menggunakan jabatan-jabatan mereka untuk menyebarkan fanatisme dan melakukan diskriminasi. 

Presiden Yudhoyono telah menciptakan infrastruktur hukum yang diskriminatif di Indonesia. Dia telah mengeluarkan berbagai aturan yang diskriminatif, mempertahankan UU tentang penodaan  agama di Mahkamah Konstitusional, dan membuat peraturan yang memberikan hukuman selama lima tahun penjara kepada siapa saja yang menyebarkan ajaran Ahmadiyah.

Dalam beberapa tahun belakangan ini, konflik dan penindasan telah meningkat di Papua Barat, dimana penduduk aslinya menghadapi diskriminasi di tanah mereka sendiri. Pada akhir bulan April, setidaknya terdapat 40 orang tahanan politik di Papua.

Di bawah kepemimpinan Presiden Yudhoyono, impunitas terus berlanjut bagi kejahatan-kejahatan terhadap kemanusiaan di masa lalu. Polisi dan militer seringkali bertindak dengan tanpa tanggungjawab di seluruh negeri kepulauan ini.

Dengan segala hormat,

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