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Budi Nugroho P.



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)


 President Joko Widodo laid emphasis Jakarta on Wednesday that 50 percent of the receipts from cigarette excise must be directed for health services.

"We have issued the presidential regulation for it," the president noted at the State Palace while referring to the mandate of the law.

He said the law had mandated that 50 percent of the cigarette excise must be used for services linked to health.

"BPJS Kesehatan (health insurance) suffered a deficit that must be covered. Public health service, no matter how much, must be given as best as it could, so the deficit must be covered partly from the cigarette excise," he stated.

Widodo said he had ordered the development and financial comptroller BPKP to check the financial condition of BPJS Kesehatan.

"This is procedure. Accountability must be ensured," he noted.

Widodo said he had also ordered the president director and board of directors of BPJS Kesehatan to improve all its systems, including the verification of claims.

"BPJS Kesehatan covers central to district and city levels across the country. It is not easy controlling and monitoring claims from hospitals. It is not easy," he emphasized.

In view of its coverage, BPJS Kesehatan must continue to improve its system, so that it is more efficient.

"I have experienced it all. In Jakarta, we have the Jakarta Health Card. Controlling hospitals is not easy, and this covers the entire country. It means the system must constantly be improved," he stated.

In response to the question of whether income of regions will decline if 50 percent of the cigarette excise would be used to pay BPJS Kesehatan, the president noted that it was the mandate of the law.

"It will be the regions that will also enjoy it, as the service is not at the central level only," he noted, adding that the regions had also approved it.

Deputy Finance Minister Mardiasmo stated that his office will apply several scenarios to control deficit in BPJS Kesehatan by increasing the role of regional governments. (ant) 


An international seminar themed SEAMEO Education Agenda for Sustainable Southeast Asia was organized by Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO), in cooperation with the Indonesian Education and Culture Ministry, Kuta, Bali, on Wednesday.

The seminar discussed seven priority areas of SEAMEO, Indonesian Education and Culture Minister Muhadjir Effendy said on the sidelines of the seminar. The Ministers of Education of Southeast Asia launched the SEAMEO New Education Agenda based on seven priority areas for the next 20 years (2015-2035).

The seven priorities include Early Childhood Care and Education; Addressing Barriers to Inclusion; Resiliency in the Face of Emergencies; Promoting Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET); Revitalizing Teacher Education; Promoting Harmonization in Higher Education and Research; and Adopting a 21st Century Curriculum.

With the view of achieving sustainable development goals in the region, there should be a more effective and thorough interconnected operation between SEAMEO Member Countries and education partners to pursue regional goals by shaping a new learning paradigm that promotes these principles.

Effendy is currently president of SEAMEO, which has SEAMEO Centers in 24 regions in Southeast Asian region. 
Director of SEAMEO Secretariat, Gatot Hari Priowirjanto, remarked that the seminar had 29 speakers and 250 participants representing eight Southeast Asian countries and 11 SEAMEO member countries. ( ant )


The Czech Republic has high technology and expertise in the construction of railway project, while Indonesia is now intensifying its infrastructure development, including railroads. Hence, the Czech Republic during the visit of Czech Republic Parliament Senate President Milan Stech, is exploring the possibility of cooperation in the development of railway projects in Indonesia.

According to Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto, the Czech Republic and Indonesia can cooperate not only in the railway project but also in other sectors. Therefore, both sides need to establish a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (CEPA) to expand cooperation between the two countries.

"Some of our manufacturing products have the potential to penetrate the Czech market, including textiles and clothing, footwear, wooden-based furniture, as well as pulp and paper," he stated.

But more importantly, according to Hartarto, the Czech Republic has a rubber processing industry that is quite competitive, such as tire factories. Indonesia has a railroad industry that has been able to produce various components and railway infrastructure, for instance, rolling stock, rail tracks, and signaling systems. This has become a collaborative opportunity for both countries for technology transfer.

"Indonesia can be used as a hub for the development of a railroad industry. Several countries, including Australia, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, and Sri Lanka, have ordered and imported trains from Indonesia," he explained.

In the meantime, the Czech Republic has set sights on railway projects cooperation in Indonesia, especially in Yogyakarta. The Government of the Czech Republic is exploring cooperation with the Yogyakarta Special Region Government in the construction of a railroad that would connect the New Yogyakarta International Airport (NYIA) Airport in Kulon Progo.

For this purpose, Czech Republic Parliament Senate President Milan Stech, the Czech Republic`s Ambassador to Indonesia Ivan Hotec, and a number of Czech delegates met with Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono X in Gedong Pracimosono, Kepatihan Office Complex, Yogyakarta, on Wednesday.

"This offers opportunities for cooperation, such as the Czech Republic with Indonesia`s state-owned railway firm PT KAI to build railroads from the NYIA airport to Tugu Station or from Yogyakarta to Borobudur," Buwono stated after meeting the delegates from the Czech Republic.

After the meeting with the governor, a number of Czech Republic`s business delegates, who were members of the Czech Chamber of Commerce and Czech Banking representatives, followed up the results of the meeting with the Yogyakarta governor. They held a meeting with the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin), PT Kerera Api Indonesia (KAI), and state-owned airport operator PT Angkasa Pura (AP) 1.

Chairman of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry GKR Mangkubumi remarked that in the meeting there were three priorities on which both sides could cooperate. In addition to the NYIA Airport Train project, there is also a plan for the construction of Tanjung Adikarto Port, the development of Sardjito General Hospital management, and the construction of a hospital in the new airport area.

"Regarding cooperation in train projects, the Czech Republic does have a good train factory. PT KAI will, of course, know the kind of cooperation that can be carried out," a daughter of the Sultan revealed.

Meanwhile, Vice President of Czech Chamber of Commerce, Michal Srefl, explained that he wanted to contribute to a number of major projects in Yogyakarta. He claimed that the Czech Republic had a number of factories that were adequate to meet infrastructure-related needs.

Srefl mentioned the railway project which connects the NYIA Airport. He added that his side can supply various needs, such as train electrification and the design of railroad construction, at competitive prices.

Construction of the railway line from Yogyakarta to the new airport, according to him, is very vital. In addition to facilitating passenger mobility, the route will also be used to transport iron sand produced by PT JMI in Kulon Progo. (ant)