The student-led protests this week have spread across Indonesia, with thousands demonstrating in front of parliament buildings in hundreds of cities.
Yet even in the fourth day of protest, many have focused on just two of the many things the movement has asked for: delaying the passage of problematic laws (including one that would outlaw sex outside marriage), and revoking a revision to the law governing the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK).
Although these are important, having this limited focus excludes other critical things people are asking for. The movement is about more than just sex and corruption.
7-Point Declaration of the Indonesian Protest Movement
- Annul/revise the proposed criminal code and other problematic bills, including the mineral mining bill, land bill, correctional procedures bill and labor bill; revoke KPK Law and Natural Resources Law; pass the eradication of sexual violence bill and informal workers bill.
- Remove problematic KPK (The Corruption Eradication Commission) leaders picked by House of Representatives.
- Ban Indonesian Military and National Police personnel from holding civilian offices.
- End militarism in Papua and other regions, and immediately free Papuan political prisoners
- End criminalisation of activists.
- End burning of forests in Kalimantan (Borneo) and Sumatera (Sumatra) and punish corporations responsible for fires and revoke their permits.
- Resolve human rights violation and put human rights violators on trial, including those at the highest levels of government; immediately restore rights of the victims.
Additional context about each demand
Below are additional videos and links about each demand of the movement.
1. Annul/revise the proposed criminal code and other problematic bills
These bills include the mineral mining bill, land bill, correctional procedures bill and labour bill; revoke KPK Law and Natural Resources Law; pass the eradication of sexual violence bill and informal workers bill.
- RKUHP Explainer: All the controversial articles in Indonesia’s criminal code overhaul [Coconuts.co]
- A National Alliance was formed and provided resources here. [ReformasiKUHP]
- A petition has twice reached its target and is still gaining support, aiming for 1,000,000 signatures. [Change.org]
- Apart from the conservative provisions in the criminal code that got the most mainstream media attention, there are many other concerning provisions. Some of them have the potential to be abused to attack freedom of speech, both online and offline.
Here are examples of some controversial revisions proposed:
- Articles 262 on fake news: Anyone who knowingly shares or spreads fake news that causes public unrest, may be jailed for up to six years or fined IDR500 million.
- Article 263 states that those who spread or share the news that may be uncertain, overblown or incomplete that may cause public unrest may be jailed for up to two years or fined IDR50 million.
- Article 417 punishes extramarital sex by up to one year in jail.
- Article 419 states that couples who live together without being legally married could be sentenced to six months in prison.
- Article 421 criminalizes “obscene acts” in public with a penalty of up to six months in prison.
- Articles 304 to 309 expand the current Blasphemy Law and maintain the maximum five-year prison term.
- Article 118 imposes up to a four-year prison sentence on anyone who spreads Marxist-Leninist teachings.
- Article 219 criminalizes “insults” to the president or vice president.
- Articles 353 and 354 criminalizes insulting public authority or state institutions.
- Under Article 440, anyone who verbally accuses another publicly with the intention of defaming them may be jailed for up to nine months or fined IDR10 million.
- Under Article 446, anyone who smears the reputation of a deceased subject may be jailed for up to six months or fined IDR10 million.
- Ongoing advocacy to annul the revised draft of the Indonesian Criminal Code Bill/RKUHP [New Naratif]
- Indonesians could soon be jailed for insulting the president, if colonial-era law is resurrected [South China Morning Post]
- Indonesia’s NGOs Urges Government to Cancel Mineral and Coal Bill Draft [The Insider Stories]
- War on graft in mining, palm oil hit by new law weakening Indonesian enforcer[Mongabay]
- ‘We’d rather die than lose’: villagers in Indonesia fight for a land rights revolution [The Guardian]
- An agrarian reform agenda for Jokowi [Inside Indonesia]
- Indonesian president signs order to accelerate land reform [Mongabay]
- Cybersecurity Draft Bill Contains Troubling Articles Says SAFEnet [TEMPO]
2. Remove problematic KPK (The Corruption Eradication Commission) leaders picked by House of Representatives.
- President of Indonesia urged to reject revision of Corruption Eradication Commission Law. [Press Release, Transparency International]
- Despite mass protests, President Jokowi rules out blocking revisions to KPK [Coconuts.co]
- Indonesia revises law to put checks on anti-graft agency, sparks protests [Reuters]
- Meeting notes from the house to change the RUU KPK law
4. End militarism in Papua and other regions, and immediately free Papuan political prisoners.
- Papuan Voices [Papuan Voices]
- Short documentaries about various human rights issues in West Papua [EngageMedia]
- Papua Behind Bars [Papua Behind Bars]
- Documenting West Papua’s Political Prisoners [Global Voices]
- Governor of Indonesia’s Papua calls for army to end hunt for rebels[Reuters]
5. End criminalisation of activists.
- Our recent post about the violations of media freedom and other human rights in West Papua. [EngageMedia]
- Indonesia protests: Hundreds hurt in student-police clashes [Al Jazeera]
- Indonesia: Death toll mounts after new West Papua clashes [Al Jazeera]
- Support letter from Lawyers Rights Watch Canada (LRWC) and Lawyers 4 Lawyers (L4L) on the charges to an Indonesian lawyer defending right to self determination for West Papuans.
- INDONESIA: Human Rights Activist Interrogated by Police After Criticizing the Military [Asian Human Rights Commission]
- ‘New chapter of persecution’: Indonesia cracks down on West Papua separatists [The Guardian]
- INDONESIA: Stop persecution against human rights activists[AHRC Press Release via Scoop NZ]
- Controversy over Indonesia’s past sparks protests against human rights groups [Civicus]
- “These Political Games Ruin Our Lives” – Indonesia’s LGBT Community Under Threat [Human Rights Watch]
- Environmental Activist Arrested Under Anti-Communist Law [TEMPO]
6. End burning of forests in Kalimantan (Borneo) and Sumatera (Sumatra) and punish corporations responsible for fires and revoke their permits.
- ‘This is earth not Mars’: Blood red skies unsettle Indonesians [Reuters]
- A Letter from Kinipan Kids [EngageMedia]
- Petition for Sumatra forests
- Petition for Borneo forests
About the Author
Red Tani is EngageMedia’s Impact and Engagement Manager. He helps advocates tell meaningful stories that create impact using the power of video, online tools, & other technology that is free, secure, & ethical.