The Coalition of Indonesian Civil Society Organizations urged the government to utilize Indonesia`s position as non-permanent member of the UN Security Council (UNSC) to help put an end to the humanitarian crisis against Rohingya people in Myanmar. The statement was made by Fatia Maulidiyanti from the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KontraS) during a press conference in Jakarta on Thursday.
UN Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar reported at least 319 villages to have been destroyed by the Myanmar army. The report also confirms the attacks, extrajudicial killings, deprivation of arbitrary freedom, enforced disappearances, destruction of property and looting, torture and inhumane treatment, rape, and other forms of sexual violence against the Rohingya people. The attacks have forcibly evicted more than 700 thousand Rohingyas from Myanmar. Still according to the report, it was determined that the Myanmar government was responsible for the act of violence committed by non-state armed groups against civilians.
In its own stance, KontraS sees that the Myanmar government, which should be responsible for handling this crisis, acts defensively and fortifies itself with the principle of non-intervention and state sovereignty to avoid international pressure. For this reason, the Coalition of Indonesian Civil Society Organizations called on the government of Indonesia to be more proactive in playing a role as the non-permanent member of the UNSC for 2019-2020 period to help resolve the humanitarian disasters. It is based on the UN`s proposition to conduct humanitarian intervention, namely the Responsibility to Protect (RtoP), so that it can act to stop cruel military operations in Myanmar and seek accountability for all violations that have occurred.
"We emphasize the importance of upholding the `responsibility to protect` in the UN Charter. The state is obliged and responsible for protecting its citizens. If the state is considered to have failed in protecting its citizens, the international community has the right to intervene," Maulidiyanti noted.
In the recommendation of the UN Fact-Finding Mission report on Myanmar, it was stated that the UNSC must ensure accountability for crimes under international law carried out in Myanmar. It would be even better if the crimes against humanity could be referred to the International Criminal Court or alternatively by creating an ad hoc International Criminal Court. For this reason, Amnesty International Indonesia advised the government of Indonesia to use its position in the UNSC to recommend the situation in Myanmar to the International Criminal Court (ICC).
"Since Myanmar is not a member of the ICC, the only way to try them is to recommend the humanitarian disaster situation in Myanmar to the Security Council and immediately make a resolution. We can consider applying other pressures, such as the imposition of an economic embargo," Papang Hidayat, Amnesty International Indonesia senior researcher, remarked.
The Coalition of Indonesian Civil Society Organizations consists of the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KontraS), Amnesty International Indonesia, the Human Rights Working Group (HRWG), the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI), Yayasan Perlindungan Insani Indonesia (Protection Desk Indonesia), Asia Justice and Rights, as well as Forum Asia. (ant)