Mobile Menu - OpenMobile Menu - Closed

“All human beings are born free and equal

in dignity and rights.”

- Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Human Rights in Indonesia

Thursday, May 23, 2013 - 10:00am
2261 Rayburn House Office Building


Following its transition to democratic rule in the 1990s, Indonesia’s political system has undergone enormous change, including a significant decentralization of power to local authorities and the decreased role of the military in domestic affairs and internal security. In this context, human rights protections have generally improved, including in areas with a history of secessionist movements like Aceh. Non-governmental organizations have also flourished, and many Indonesians now see democracy as part of their national identity.

Despite such significant reforms, Indonesia’s human rights situation needs more progress. Indonesia’s military and police retain a sense of impunity in some parts of the country, most notably in the restive eastern provinces of Papua. A well-documented rise in religious intolerance has also manifested itself in intimidation of and violence toward some religious groups, including Indonesia’s Ahmadiya community and Christians in the West Java province. The State Department’s 2012 Indonesia Country Report on Human Rights Practices reported instances of unlawful killings, arbitrary arrests and detention, numerous reports of torture between July 2011 and June 2012 and narrow limitations on the freedom of expression, particularly in areas with pro-independence movements.

This hearing will review Indonesia’s current human rights situation and U.S. foreign policy with a view toward Indonesia’s presidential and parliamentary elections in 2014.

If you have any questions, please contact the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission at 202-225-3599 or

Hosted by:

James P. McGovern, M.C.
Co-Chairman, TLHRC
Frank R. Wolf, M.C.
Co-Chairman, TLHRC


Panel I

  • Dan Baer, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, U.S. Department of State
  • Susan Sutton, Director, Office of Maritime Southeast Asia, U.S. Department of State

Panel II

  • John Sifton, Asia Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch
    Written testimony
  • T. Kumar, Director for International Advocacy, Amnesty International USA
    Written testimony
  • Sri Suparyati, Deputy Coordinator, Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS)
    Written testimony
  • Octovianus Mote, Yale University Law School Fellow & former Kompas journalist
    Written testimony



113th Congress