Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Past Abuses in the Hand of the New Regime

Options Without an Alternative

By Mugiyanto

We do not care who will be the president, unless the president will solve

the case of human rights violation I am experiencing.

Otherwise I will be golput (not vote).

(Ruminah, a mother of a disappeared victim in May riots 1998

in a hearing with Gus Dur in May 2004)

The Dilemma

The first round of the Indonesian Presidential Election in July 2004 has put General (Ret.) Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, former Coordinating Minister for Political and Security Affairs and Megawati Sukarnoputri, the present President of the Republic of Indonesia to run for the second and final round on September 20, 2004. For the victims of human rights violations, the two candidates do not give any hope for justice to deliver. Each General (Ret.) Yodhoyono represents the military and Megawati represents the status quo.

General (Ret.) Yudhoyono, although already a retired, is more as a representative of the Indonesian military that was the main element of the perpetrators of human rights violation, rather than a representative of change to progress like echoed by his supporters. It is not easy for the people to forget the memory that he was involved in the crack down of democracy movement on July 27, 1996, when thugs supported by the police and military attacked the crowds of the supporters of Megawati Sukarnoputri in their headquarter in Jakarta. Dozens of people were killed and disappeared during the event As the Coordinating Minister of Political and Security Affairs, General (Ret.) Yudhoyono also involved in releasing repressive measures in solving problems in the north province of Nangro Aceh Darussalam.

As the present president of the Republic of Indonesia, Megawati Sukarnoputri is the symbol of status quo, meaning that she is representing the existing regime that tends to preserve her and her group’s power and interests without promising change and progress for the improvement of the life of the people. During the last three years of her presidency, Megawati delivers no single policies that benefit majority of people from which she got supports to become the president. In return to those killed, disappeared and suffer on her behalf during the July 27, 1996 crack down, Megawati promotes General (Ret.) Sutiyoso who was in charge of the security of Jakarta Capital to become the Governor of the Jakarta for the second term. In regards to legal process on the above mention crack down, Megawati indicate no supports to the victims nor pressure to General Sutiyoso.

In relation to dealing with past gross human rights violation, President Megawati does not show any goodwill let alone significant achievements. Human rights ad hoc tribunal on East Timor case has acquitted all military and police officers but only two civilians, namely Abilio Soares the former Governor of East Timor Province and Eurico Guterres the former Commander of militia groups were sentenced. The Washington commented on disappointment for this human rights tribunal. The present human rights ad hoc tribunal on Tanjung Priok massacre in 1984 so far has also acquitted most of the military and police defendants except Maj. Gen. Butar-Butar for committing gross human rights violation. The two existing human rights ad hoc tribunal has indicated the unwillingness and incapability of Megawati as civilian authority over military dominance.

The dealing with human rights violation in the past is even worse if we look at the way Megawati handle the case of massacre in 1965/1996, Lampung Massacre in 1989, May 1998 riots, shooting of students at Semanggi and Trisakti and kidnapping of pro democracy activists in 1998, in which no legal action has been taken. The truth commission that supposed to be the complementary to prosecution for past cases of gross human rights violation is still a controversy in the parliament. More than that, new violence and cases of human rights violations keep happening in the conflict torn areas of Aceh, West Papua and Poso.

The above mentioned explanation on the two president candidates has put the victims of human rights violation in dilemma of which one to vote or whether not to vote any. The dilemma is that the former has been proven of being the source of problem and the later has been proven of unwillingness to solve the problem.

The Victims Stay Suffering

What rest in the victims and their relatives due to the absence of legal, social and political remedy is the prolonged period of suffering, sorrow, pain and grief. The impacts of being the victims and their relatives will never be resolved if victims’ rights, which are defined by Theo van Boven as the rights to truth, justice and reparations are ignored by the state. The victims of human rights violation believe that their suffering will never be able to be repaired, recovered nor compensated. Being mentally and physically tortured and maltreated in the detention centres, being socially and politically isolated and discriminated, being economically marginalized, being branded and stigmatized as separatists, communists and fundamentalists is a lifetime pain. Not knowing the fate and where about of their disappeared ones and seeing the alleged perpetrators free and promoted instead is in itself an ultimate torture.

Although there is no scientific research proving that the fulfilment of the rights of the victims, namely truth, justice and reparation, will automatically recover all the wounds of the victims and their relatives, as a matter of fact it will relieve them from the long hold life burdens. Simply to make an analogy with newly got an accident person in the night, the truth will be the light, justice will be the presence of the police and fulfilment of the rights of reparation will be the medications. The light, the presence of the police and the medications will never make the person be the same as before, but they very much reduce the mental and physical pain of the victims.

Challenges of the Coming Regime

Every country in transition to democracy will inevitably deal with past human rights abuses. It is so because the term transition to democracy implies the existence of the previous condition that is in contradiction to democracy. In the context of Indonesia, the transition is from militaristic and authoritarian rule that adores militarism in the name of stability and fake harmony. Whether or not, the coming president of the Republic of Indonesia that is elected through the most so-called democratic way of direct presidential election will haunted by the shadow of the past. The choice of the coming president will be to keep in the shadow of the past and being unable to move forward towards progress or to deal with it democratically and justly. In the coming election however, the choice will not be as difficult as the one for the victims in the coming election.

The article is taken from The VOICE, Vol. IV, No. 2, October 2004

Munir; An Obituary



(An Obituary: December 8, 1965-September 7, 2004)

There’s no forgetting,

there’s no winter

That will wipe your name,

shining brother,

From the lips of the people.

(Pablo Neruda)

Last Meeting with Munir

On late Thursday afternoon of September 2004, around 60 victims and relatives of victims of human rights violation were sitting in crowds in front of the office of KONTRAS. There will be special meeting that afternoon; a meeting, a farewell meeting with Munir before he left for the Netherlands for continuing his Master study on international law on human rights in Utrecht University. The 60 victims and their relatives are from various victim’s communities that have been with Munir for struggling, at least since early 1998 when Munir was coordinating KONTRAS.

At about 4 p.m, Munir shown up. He got off from his old car. Munir got the car since 4 months ago. It was a cheap used Toyota that he bought from a friend by credit. Then Munir greeted all of us, and we all entered the meeting room of KONTRAS.

First, Munir delivered a ten minute speech, saying that he was going to the Netherlands for continuing his study on subject that very much related to human rights, justice and the victims. He added further that his going to study was part of the ongoing struggle for justice and human rights. He also said that his being in the Netherlands did not mean that he was away from the victims. More specifically, Munir said about the need for the victims to unite and strengthen solidarity, as the coming presidential election (to be held on September 20, 2004) will not bring about significant change in favor of victims’ interests. The newly adopted Bill on Truth and Reconciliation Commission (KKR) and the controversial Draft Bill on the Indonesian Military (RUU TNI) needed to be responded by the victims. Otherwise both Bills will pave the way for the perpetrators of human rights violation to impunity and the military to go back to politics.

The were many responses from the victims. Most expressed they expectation that Munir will succeed in his study and go back again soon to the field of struggle with the victims. However, it can not be hidden that the victims felt loss with the daily absence of Munir in few days to come. Seeing this, Munir said that he will be available for 24 hours for the victims. “If there is anything you want to let me know, please send me letter. You can also email me from KONTRAS office. It is available for the victims”.

Well, no body thought that that Thursday afternoon was the last meeting with Munir, until suddenly on September 7, 2004, we were shock by the news that our best comrade, leader and teacher Munir, (39) has passed away in his flight to Amsterdam.

People from all over Indonesia shed their tears, expressed their deep sorrow and felt a great loss because of that. Munir’s death has become the greatest loss in the Indonesians’ struggle for defending the victims’ human rights and solving the cases of human rights violations by the state.

Mrs. Ade Sitompul, one of the human rights defenders from the Voice of Indonesian Human Rights (SHMI), stated that a figure like Munir can only be found in a certain situation. So, she said, it would take a long time to have someone like him.

Living in the Struggle

In his life, Munir has fully dedicated himself to defend the victims of politics and injustice by the state. That is why he has taken the right step by choosing a Legal Aid Institute (LBH) as a place to defend the victims’ human rights. At Surabaya Legal Aid Institute (LBH Surabaya), he became the Head of the Labour and Civil Rights – a position in which he had to directly deal with the state’s repressive instruments such as military, as well as the policies against the labour and democracy.

In 1993, Munir together with activists from NGOs did investigations and campaigns over the death of Marsinah, a female worker who was murdered after leading a strike in Sidoardjo. She encouraged her co-workers to stop working. At that time, the case became a national issue. It was even taken before the UN Commission for Human Rights.

The main perpetrator was strongly assumed to have involved the military. Munir, then, was elected as the secretary of The Solidarity Committee for Marsinah (KASUM). This case has brought his name to the national stage as a courageous person who obviously accused the military of being responsible for the murder of Marsinah. An attitude which was rarely possessed by the human rights defenders at that time. The military felt annoyed by Munir’s courage and strong willingness to keep moving forward to make them be responsible for Marsinah’s death.

Then, Munir was ‘abducted’ and intimidated by the Bakorstanasda[1] of Brawijaya Military Command (KODAM) in Surabaya. They asked him to stop all his campaigns and quit making statements that might have endangered the position of the military. The result however was that he became more confident that the military had had a connection to Marsinah’s death. He then continued fighting for Marsinah’s case until it was taken before the the UN Commission for Human Rights.

Advocacy for Marsinah’s case has shown how exactly Munir was like. He was not scared at all to defend the human rights, although he had to deal with the most powerful enemy, the military. His attitude has become the most important thread of his career as a human rights defender who stood against the military.

Also, he also got involved in defending and advocating the victims of gross human rights violations in Aceh and East Timor, two military operation regions for more than ten years.

The highlight of Munir’s struggle for human rights and contribution to the next enforcement process of human rights was when he established a Commission for Disappearances and Victims of Violence (KONTRAS) in March 1998 in which he become the head. Its establishment began with investigations on a series of systematic abductions of some pro-democracy activists by the Army Special Forces (Kopasus) that happened since mid 1997 to mid 1998 in relation to the People’s Consultative Assembly General Session (SU MPR) when the Jenderal Besar Soeharto was elected as the President of Indonesia for the seventh time. At that time, the Commander of Kopasus was General Major Prabowo, Soeharot’s son-in-law.

Some victims of abductions who were released through the efforts of Munir and KONTRAS have done campaigns, lobbying, actions and pressures on the government and military in order to make them admit their involvement and also release all victims of abductions who were still detained.

In its history, we can say that Indonesia has never had a general suspended because of having led an operation or a policy which violated human rights. In most cases, it only happened at the troop level. However, Munir and KONTRAS with all the supports from the victims and their families has successfully urged Military Honor Council (Dewan Kehormatan Militer) to suspend Lieutenant General Prabowo Subianto who at that time became the Commander of the Army Strategic Reserve Command (Pangkostrad).

Nevertheless, all investigations and courts on the perpetrators of the abductions still showed that there was ‘impunity’ process for those who held the military command. Knowing that investigations on the cases of involuntary disappearance by the state were not completely done, Munir encouraged the victims and their relatives to establish an Indonesian Association of Families of the Disappeared known as IKOHI in late 1998. Then, IKOHI continued taking important measures needed in order to persecute the state responsibility and to look for those still disappeared. IKOHI does not only act as a campaign machine, but it also functions as an organization for ‘the movements of the victims’, which can empower the politics among the victims, their families and societies.

The impunity for the perpetrators of the human rights violations has also bothered Munir’s mind, especially when the Draft Law of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission started being deliberated by the Parliament (Dewan perwakilan Rakyat) since last year. He noticed that it was not the right time to propose the draft considering the ‘political situation’ which could have resulted in law products that legalized impunity ended with a reconciliation “without truth and justice”.

Munir’s Legacy

There may be three main ideas of Munir’s struggle for human rights. First, it fights against various structures and policies violating the human rights with no fear at all. In the cases in Indonesia, the structure that is often liked to human rights violations are military institution or the Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI) and the Police (Polri). That is why the process to enhance the human rights will directly and indirectly deal with the military. To make the military not to be part of the politics and to create professional army under the civil supremacy have become his ideas as the main pre-requisite to decrease the level and quantity of gross human rights violations in Indonesia, which in it history can never be separated from the military. Before passing away, he suggested that the Draft of the TNI’s Law recover the Dual Functions[2] (Dwi Fungsi) of TNI. He also urged that the army’s political role be totally unaccepted and rejected since it means we provide room for other gross human rights violations.

Second, he always stood up for the victims of human rights violations and took their side. He always put their interests and aspirations before anything so that we can consider what he said is the victim’s perspectives. Humbly, he never forgot allocating his time to be with the victims. He listened to their deep sorrow, scream, hope, anger and also despair. He was always alert 24 hours 7 days and ready to be visited and called by those, victims of human rights violations, for counseling and advice. He was even available for just listening to their complaints. Based on those things, indeed, he emotionally and psychologically understood how the victims and their families felt. Everything he had publicly campaigned and stated was the reflection of their hope, complaints, disappointment and courage. His organic relationship with them has made him a figure of a defender who keeps deeply rooting. It was only one in a million that a human rights defender at the international level kept being humble and down to earth and was always there standing for the victims. Only he could do that.

Third, courage is the most important thing in struggling for the human rights in Indonesia. Munir was a phenomenon because he continued moving forward and leading the victims and the society to keep criticizing every single policy, the paramilitary and state practices which violated the human rights. That is why it remains to be seen that the military apparatus are still against and allergic to him and all his activities to defend human rights. He never gave up fighting for the victims’ rights. He even often faced a series of terror from being threatened to be killed to bomb explosion at his residence. We hope his spirit and courage become the diaspora to all human rights defenders.

Of course, knowing that he has passed away, we feel a great loss. Nothing can take his place. To commemorate him, all his great works to stand for the victims and to fight all structures directly and indirectly linked with the human rights violations are still continued. This is the best thing for us to do to remember the most courageous human rights defender in Indonesia: MUNIR.

The article is taken from The Voice, the magazine of the AFAD, Volume IV No. 2, October 2004

[1] Bakorstanasda stands for Coordinating Body for the National and Regional Stability, an extrajudicial body set up by New Order as a repressive mean for controlling people.

[2] The Dual Functions of the Indonesian military are defense and security functions and social and political functions.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

On Presidential Election; Military No Way!

Gus Solah Digunakan Sebagai "Rinso" Alias Pencuci Dosa Wiranto

(Gema Warta Ranesi, 27 Mei 2004)


Intro: Ikatan Keluarga Orang Hilang Indonesia (IKOHI), bersama para keluarga korban Senin ini mengadakan aksi bersama menuntut Komisi Nasional HAM agar segera membentuk KPP HAM adhoc kasus penghilangan orang secara paksa. Mereka mencakup para korban tahun 1965 dan sampai ke kasus-kasus penculikan yang terjadi di penghujung rejim Soeharto. Soeharto, Prabowo dan Wiranto dinilai bertanggung jawab terhadap kasus-kasus tersebut. Demikian tegas Mugiyanto dari IKOHI lepada Radio Nederland. Mugiyanto khawatir masa depan penegakan HAM bertambah suram di Indonesia, karena Wiranto kini menjadi calon presiden. Ironisnya Sholahuddin Wahid, Gus Solah, bekas pengurus Komnasham yang dulu dekat dengan para aktivis pembela HAM, kini menjadi pendampingnya. Menurut Mugiyanto, Gus Solah bakal digunakan sebagai "rinso"nya Wiranto. Terlebih dahulu Radio Nederland menanyakan kepada Mugiyanto kenapa masalah ini diungkit justru pada saat Wiranto maju sebagai capres.

Mugiyanto: Kita ingin mengingatkan masyarakat bahwa Wiranto masih punya tangung jawab yang harus dia pertanggung jawabkan pada masa lalu. Sehingga masyarakat tidak salah pilih ke depan untuk menentukan pemimpin Indonesia.

<>Radio Nederland (RN): Menurut anda pribadi apa dia tidak patut memimpin bangsa? <>

M: Saya pikir dia sama sekali tidak patut. Pertama Komnasham sebagai satu-satunya lembaga yang punya wewenang untuk menyelidiki berbagai kasus pelanggaran HAM, sudah menyimpulkan bahwa pada peristiwa Timor Timur Wiranto terlibat dan harus dimintai pertanggung jawabannya. Kemudian pada peristiwa Mei 98, yang juga sudah dibentuk KPP HAM, yang dipimpin oleh Sholahuddin
Wahid, itu juga menyimpulkan bahwa Wiranto adalah salah satu orang yang harus dimintai pertanggung jawabannya. Orang seperti itu tidak patut menjadi pemimpin Indonesia ke depan. <>

Kedua yang menjadi kekhawatiran kami yang lain adalah ketika orang seperti itu menjadi pemimpin Indonesia ke depan, menjadi presiden, menjadi eksekutif, maka kami yakin usaha-usaha untuk menuntaskan/menyelesaikan
kasus-kasus pelanggaran HAM masa lalu, akan ditutup. Karena dia salah satu orang yang terlibat di sana. Kami khawatir masa depan penegakan HAM di Indonesia sama sekali suram dan tertutup ketika mereka menjadi presiden. Dan perjuangan kita, para korban pelanggaran HAM, kemudian lembaga-lembaga yang concern (prihatin) terhadap penegakan HAM, menjadi semakin berat. <>

RN: Terus kenyataan bahwa wakilnya itu, Sholahuddin Wahid, nota bene orang bekas pengurus Komnasham dan juga yang justru mengawali atau mengangkat kasus-kasus orang hilang dan tragedi Mei dan sebagainya kok bersedia menjadi cawapres. Bagaimana? Apakah dia juga patut, menurut anda?

M: Itu sebuah ironi sebetulnya. Dan sebelumnya kita berharap Gus Solah atau Sholahuddin Wahid ini cukup dekat dengan kami ini para korban pelanggaran HAM. Kita sering ketemu dengan dia. Dia menyatakan keinginannya untuk menuntaskan kasus-kasus pelanggaran HAM masa lalu.

Nah satu minggu sebelum dia menyatakan bersedia dipinang oleh Wiranto untuk menjadi calon wakil presiden, kita bertemu dengan Gus Solah. Dan Gus Solah mengatakan bahwa sebagaimana Gus Dur - Gus kan tidak akan mau menerima pinangan Wiranto-... Tetapi satu minggu kemudian dia menyatakan bersedia. Jadi di sini kami para korban pelanggaran HAM ini merasa dibohongi, merasa ditusuk dari belakang. Kami sedih sekali sebetulnya. Gus Solah, orang yang bekerja di Komansham dan masyarakat sudah menaroh kepercayaan yang besar sekali di Komnasham, salah kepada Gus Solah ini, tapi ternyata dia memilih jalan yang sangat bertentangan dengan kami.

RN: Tapi apakah anda tidak mengira mungkin dia itu punya agenda dan tujuan-tujuan tersendiri makanya dia maju sebagai pasangan Wiranto dengan tidak melupakan perjuangan untuk menegakkan HAM, dalam hal ini membela orang-orang hilang dan orang-orang yang dilanggar HAMnya?

M: Yang disampaikan Gus Solah memang demikian, tetapi kami sama sekali tidak percaya dengan realitas politik yang ada di Indonesia ketika dia sudah betul-betul bergandengan dengan Wiranto. Wiranto bukan orang lemah. Golkar bukan orang lemah, yang akan begitu saja mau menuruti apa yang diinginkan Gus Solah atau pun PKB.

Sebaliknya, menurut kami Gus Solah hanya digunakan oleh Wiranto dan Golkar sebagai 'rinso' untuk mencuci dosa-dosa Wiranto dan Golkar pada masa lalu, dengan mengambil figur Gus Solah yang dari Komnasham itu.

Demikian Mugiyanto dari Ikatan Keluarga Korban Orang
Hilang Indonesia. <>

Interviewed by the Human Rights Program, BBC

Mohamad Susilo - Indonesian

Reporter's Story

In deciding which radio programmes I would make, I looked at the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. I wrote a proposal for 10 programmes, with each one examining a right.

After that, I attended a one-week "I have a right to..." course, organised by the BBC World Service Trust. It gave producers like me an overview on human rights.

I had heard about the human rights abuses, read about them in a newspaper, but through making the programmes I met the victims.

Mugiyanto, a man who was tortured, gave me a detailed description of what had happened to him. Sometimes it comes to my mind and I can see the picture. How he was given an electric shock; how he was beaten and kicked; without clothes, cold and bleeding. The picture stays.

Article 5: No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

No Trial

One of my programmes is about the following right: No one should be tortured. I met with one man who was a university student in 1998, when President Suharto was still in power. Suharto was planning to win the parliamentary elections for the 7th time. He had been in power for 32 years. Before he was elected, there were massive demonstrations in the big cities, held by students.

The government did not like these protests, so some members of the Special Forces, under Suharto, allegedly kidnapped prominent activists to silence them. In March 1998, 10 activists disappeared. Some were released; some are still missing.

I met Mugiyanto, one of the men, who says he was kidnapped and tortured in the office of the Army. He said he was taken at night, blindfolded. He had short trousers on, nothing more. He was questioned in the army barracks. He says they asked him, "Who was your leader? Why do you oppose the government?"

Every time the questioning ended, the army gave him an electric shock. They beat him but he kept silent. After he was released, there was no trial and the case was closed.

Making a Difference

Mugiyanto is now a legal activist for an NGO in
Jakarta. This NGO specialises in missing persons. He says, "I have the right to express my opinion, my political stance. It's a free country."

He travelled to
Europe and gave his testimony to several institutions in the Netherlands and in Geneva. At the time, his case was a high profile one because it related to the Special Forces, a very powerful group. The Special Forces was headed by the son-in-law of the president, Mr Prabowo. His men were tried and convicted, between 12 months and three years. Prabowo was fired from the army but did not go to jail.

Interview with the Christian Sciene Monitor on KOPASUS

Terrifying Indonesian Army Unit Tries To Remake Its Image

The Christian Science Monitor [US] Monday, November 20, 2000

Indonesia confronts unruly past

Instead of disbanding, a rogue Army unit is trying to remake its image.

By Dan Murphy Special to The Christian Science Monitor


When a rash of explosions rocks Jakarta, they are the immediate suspects. When mysterious "ninja" killers execute dozens of Muslim scholars in East Java, senior politicians whisper their names. And when aid workers are killed in West Timor, United Nations officials point their way.

Every authoritarian regime seems to have them, a cross between Praetorian Guards and playground bullies. The Shah of pre-revolutionary Iran had his Savak. Baby Doc Duvalier relied on the Tonton Macoutes in Haiti.

In Indonesia's case, "they" are the Special Forces Command, known as Kopassus, a 6,000-strong unit that has forged a reputation as the toughest and most terrifying within a military known for its brutality.

Though it's virtually impossible for the unit to be guilty of all that the average Indonesian believes, Kopassus remains Indonesia's largest collective suspect for good reason. The Command's terror tactics it employed against insurgents in East Timor and Aceh are legendary.

When Indonesia began moving toward democracy at the end of Suharto's 32-year reign, many assumed the unit's position would fade. That view was bolstered when the reformist President Abdurrahman Wahid promised to punish rights abusers and push the military out of politics.

Instead, Kopassus has quietly begun to rehabilitate its reputation. While debate rages over whether soldiers should be tried for human rights abuses, the unit is winning back authority and respect.

"Their method was terror, and it was being employed in the service of Suharto," says Munir, a lawyer who runs the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence. "But efforts to find justice are running up against the tradition of military impunity."

The apparent success of Kopassus in putting its dark past behind it is a symbol of how little has changed within the Indonesian armed forces - and a measure of the challenges ahead.

It's a problem that plagues countries trying to make the transition from authoritarianism to democracy - and one that foreign powers like the US helped create. Indonesia's status as an anti-Communist bulwark during the cold war led to US training and support of the military, particularly Kopassus. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the US taught its soldiers intelligence gathering and counterinsurgency skills.

But the US and other Western powers strategically averted their eyes when those lessons were put to sometimes brutal effect at home. Like other parts of the relationship, Indonesia-US military ties have been pared down to almost nothing following the calculated brutality of Indonesia's retreat from East Timor in 1999.

Mugiyanto, who like many Indonesians uses only one name, understands the danger first hand. In March 1998, he was an unknown democracy activist. Then he was picked up by Kopassus, taken blindfolded to an interrogation center, and strapped to a table. Over two days, he was beaten and given electric shocks while being interrogated about his political beliefs and the whereabouts of his friends.

After Suharto's fall, 11 Kopassus operatives were found guilty of kidnapping and torturing Mugiyanto and eight other activists - and then sentenced to 22 months in jail. Their commanding officer, Prabowo Subianto, a son-in-law of Suharto's who admitted he ordered the abductions, was honorably discharged. He's now brokering oil-for-food deals in Iraq on behalf of Minister of Industry and Trade Luhut Pandjaitan - himself a former Kopassus officer. "The forces of democracy still have a hard fight ahead of us,'' says Mugiyanto.

Mugiyanto was one of the lucky ones. Human rights activists say the unit helped kidnap and kill 15 democracy activists in Suharto's final days. Munir believes that 900 more - mostly East Timorese and Acehnese independence activists - disappeared into Kopassus interrogation centers never to be seen again, "But the law makes it very difficult to prosecute unless we can produce a body."

Kopassus, for its part, doesn't dispute its past, but insists that it is gearing up for Indonesia's reformasi era by focusing on external defense rather than internal control. "What's the point in denying the past? There are plenty of open secrets now," says Major Herindra, a 13-year Kopassus veteran who now serves as the unit's public-information officer. "We're putting more emphasis on human rights training now. We're not gathering intelligence on our own citizens anymore."

Not only did Kopassus spy on civilians, but it also infiltrated other branches of the military. It operated as a sort of "army within the Army" that could short-circuit the chain of command and set up so-called "black operations" in places like East Timor.

With President Wahid complaining that elements of the armed forces are trying to foment instability to create an authoritarian backlash, Kopassus operatives are seen by the average citizen as the natural perpetrators.

Over the past six months, the capital has been rocked by mysterious bomb blasts - the most recent being last week. From the day the blasts began, suspicion fell on Kopassus, which grew when the police picked up a Kopassus private in connection with the deadly bombing of the Jakarta Stock Exchange in September. But Herindra says the soldier had deserted his unit and was "acting alone."

Indonesia's military is chronically underfunded and soldiers traditionally take outside work to make ends meet. Military analysts say in that context, the unit's explanation could make sense. "Anyone with money could have paid for that," says one diplomat.

The best chance for accountability rests with the promised prosecution of senior officers for crimes against humanity in East Timor. When the former Indonesian province voted for independence in August 1999, pro-Jakarta militias, created and trained by Kopassus, went on a well-calculated rampage, killing dozens and driving 250,000 people from their homes.

Attorney General Marzuki Darusman says 22 officers implicated in abuses in East Timor will go on trial in January. Making that possible is a new human rights law, passed by parliament in early November and now awaiting only Wahid's signature.

TAPOL Bulletin 154/5 - November 1999

Being Abducted by KOPASSUS Prior to the Fall of Suharto

We were tortured, democracy activist reports

By James Balowski

On June 13, three leaders of Indonesia's outlawed People's Democratic Party (PRD) were released from custody. They were Mugianto (who visited Australia in 1996 under the name Robby Hartono), Nezar Patria and Aan Rusdianto. The following is an abridged version of Mugianto's written testimony, which was released on June 8.

On the afternoon of March 13, I phoned Nezar and Aan at their lodgings and arranged to meet them there in an hour. When I arrived there was no answer when I knocked on the door, and neighbours said they had left but would return. I was able to find a key and get in but immediately realised something was wrong. The lights were out and a computer, books and documents were missing.

Not knowing if they had fled or been captured, I packed some important documents, intending to leave by a side window. Outside there were a number of well-built men waiting. Unable to leave, when they knocked on the door all I could do was open it. Ten men in green uniforms entered.

They forced me into a vehicle, and I was taken to the Duren Sawit military offices. From there I was driven to the East Jakarta district military command by uniformed police officers.

I was then ordered out and transferred to another car. I was ordered to take off my shirt and was blindfolded. They told me they were a mafia group which could do anything to anyone for anybody if they had the money.

After about an hour we stopped in front of a building, and I was ordered out and told to remove my shoes and trousers, leaving me wearing only my underpants. They began hitting me repeatedly in the stomach and face until I collapsed. They then took me into a small room and laid me down on a bunk to which my hands and feet were tied. That was when the interrogation began.

I was given repeated electric shocks to my feet and ankles. They started by asking questions about Nezar and Aan, who I then realised were also there. Their interrogation had also started and I could hear their screams as they were given electric shocks and beaten.

Then they began asking about my involvement in the PRD and about the organisation's structure, particularly about Andi Arief [a PRD leader who was abducted in Lampung, South Sumatra, on March 28 and remains in police custody]. I told them that I had only recently arrived in Jakarta and didn't know very much but that Andi was in Lampung. They didn't believe me and continued to give me electric shocks.

They tried to force me to admit I was a leader of the PRD and asked about the organisation's international work and its donors.

On the afternoon of the next day, a number of other people arrived and questioned me about the PRD's program, in particular on East Timor, Aceh and West Papua, and the current political situation. There was some physical abuse but mostly they just tried to frighten me.

I remained tied to the bed for two days, only allowed out three times, twice to urinate, once to be photographed. Except for when I was being photographed, I was kept blindfolded the whole time. Although they gave me good food, I could not finish it because my lip was badly hurt from the beating.

Still blindfolded, on March 15 I was put in a car and driven to another building. There I was interrogated by five people for about 30 minutes, then photographed and videotaped.

Together with Aan and Nezar, I was put in a car which had five men in it. During the journey we were intimidated and told not to lie. I was threatened by having a gun placed against my head. They then ordered us to pray and make out a final message for our parents.

When we arrived at the central Jakarta police station we were interrogated for about five hours, then separated and placed in isolation cells. Only after a month did they allowed us to mix with other prisoners. On May 17, a military officer arrived and questioned us about our abduction.

After 83 days in the isolation cells, we were finally released.

Source: Green Left Weekly, Australian Leftwing Newspaper , June 1998

Article in the Jakarta Post on Enforced Disappearances

Enforced disappearances: Never again in Indonesia
Mugiyanto, Chairman, Indonesian Association of Families of Missing Persons (IKOHI),
Enforced or involuntary disappearances constitute a violation of the rules of international law that guarantee the right to recognition as an individual before the law, the individual's right to liberty and security and the right not to be subjected to torture and other cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment. Thus reads Article 1 of the United Nations Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances. Enforced or involuntary disappearances "also violates or constitutes a grave threat to the right to life," the article states.

In the last week of May every year, various community groups and groups of victims and families of those subjected to enforced disappearances from various countries, particularly from Latin America, Asia and Africa, observe the International Week of Disappearances. The Indonesian Association of Families of Victims of Enforced Disappearances (IKOHI) and the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) are two of these groups. A state policy of "disappearing" people was firstly known to bepracticed by Adolf Hitler, when he issued a decree in 1941 ordering that anyone "endangering German security" in areas controlled by the Nazi government be arrested and taken secretly to Germany, where they were to disappear without a trace. This policy was later adopted as a systematic state policy prevailing in South America, particularly in Guatemala and Brazil, from the late 1960s up to the early 1970s. The term "enforced or involuntary disappearances" was first coined by a non-governmental organization in Latin America.

In Indonesia, this phenomenon did not come to public attention until the latter stages of Soeharto's New Order regime, a period marked by a number of cases in which pro-democracy activists were subjected to enforced disappearances or were kidnapped by the state apparatus, because they were politically against the ruling regime. Kontras has documented that 14 people are still missing today. Their enforced disappearances took place in 1997/1998 against the backdrop of three political settings: The 1997 general elections campaigning period, the pre-1998 general session of the People's Consultative Assembly (MPR) and the post-1998 general session of the Assembly. One of these missing people is Wiji Thukul, a poet whose work is said to be critical of the ruling regime.

Five years have passed since these enforced disappearances took place. Regimes have changed. Families of the victims have made many attempts to find out the whereabouts of their loved ones. They have visited many places, relevant government agencies and international institutions abroad, but to little avail. The state must be held accountable for these heinous crimes, must stop such crimes and prevent them from happening again. These three points constitute the demands made by IKOHI, Kontras and other Indonesian rights activists over the past five years. The non-recurrence of enforced disappearances can be guaranteed only if the state can account for previous cases, so the state must investigate these past cases.

The legal process will reveal the truth behind these cases so that the perpetrators, the incidents themselves and the victims, including their current and their welfare, will come to light. If the investigations, interrogations and fair prosecution take place, the state would admit to having committed serious human rights violations. The state's next obligation will be to fulfill the rights of the victims. The state must restore the victims' rights or provide rehabilitation and compensation. This reparation is compulsory on the part of the state and must be conducted the moment the process of truth-seeking and prosecution takes place. Failure to thoroughly settle the crime of enforced disappearances will only lead to the recurrence of similar incidents. In Indonesia, this fear has become a reality. The failure to thoroughly settle the cases of enforced disappearances in 1997/1998 has led to continued disappearances.

It is of vital importance that all segments of the civilian community should devote their attention to enforced disappearances, especially considering that the government, in its effort to fight terrorism, has promulgated the Law on Terrorism. Article 26 of this law stipulates that an investigator can detain people on the basis of intelligence, and that an interrogation conducted by the chairman and deputy chairman of a district court can be held behind closed doors. Some circles have dubbed these articles as "articles of kidnapping".

The current political process is highly conducive to enforced disappearances, as the dominant position of the military over civilian political authorities have made it possible for the military to act freely without having to heed critical voices in society. The government policy regarding Aceh is a concrete example. Then, prior to the 2004 general elections, the political elite and political parties alike would be contesting one another -- a situation highly prone to political violence. In this context, enforced disappearances is very likely become one of the manifestations of this violence. It is time that we all called out loud, like the relatives of enforced disappearances elsewhere: Nunca mas! Never again! --

The writer is a survivor of the 1998 kidnapping of pro-democracy activists.
Source: The Jakarta Post, Opinion, June 09, 2003

Atricle in the KOMPAS Daily on Disappearances

Menyembuhkan Amnesia Sejarah Kasus Penghilangan Paksa
Oleh Mugiyanto

DHEK jaman berjuang//njur kelingan anak lanang;
Biyen tak openi//ning saiki ono ngendi. Jare yen wis menang//keturutan sing digadhang;
Bien ninggal janji//saiki opo lali. Ning gunung//tak ingoni (cadhongi) sega jagung;
Yen mendhung//tak kudhungi (silihi) caping gunung. Sukur bisa nyawang//gunung desa dadi rejo;
Dene ora ilang//nggone lara lapa.
(Di zaman berjuang//teringat anak laki-lakiku; Dulu saya rawat//sekarang entah di mana.
Katanya kalau sudah menang//terpenuhilah semua cita-cita.
Dulu anakku pernah berjanji//apakah sekarang dia lupa.
Di gunung//kuberi makan nasi jagung. Kalau mendung//kupayungi caping gunung.
Syukur bisa bertemu anakku lagi//hingga kampung kami jadi sejahtera.
Biar tak sia-sia//semua pengorbanannya).

BAIT itu adalah penggalan lagu Caping Gunung gubahan komponis legendaris Gesang. Lagu itu dihayati betul oleh Paimin, ayah Suyat, korban penghilangan paksa aktivis prodemokrasi pada awal 1998, beberapa bulan sebelum Presiden Soeharto ditumbangkan gerakan reformasi. Paimin amat tersentuh lagu itu karena sampai hari ini, nasib dan keberadaan Suyat tetap menjadi misteri, belum terungkap atau sengaja tak diungkap.

Suyat bukanlah satu-satunya aktivis prodemokrasi yang dihilangkan pada periode itu. Komisi untuk Orang Hilang dan Korban Tindak Kekerasan (Kontras) mencatat dan mendokumentasikan 14 orang yang sampai kini bernasib sama. Mereka dihilangkan pada periode tahun 1997/1998 dengan tiga setting politik yang melatarbelakanginya.
Pertama, masa kampanye Pemilu 1997. Pada periode ini mereka yang sampai sekarang masih hilang adalah Yani Afri alias Rian, Sonny, Dedi Umar Hamdun, Noval Said Alkatiri, dan Ismail. Kedua, periode pra-Sidang Umum 1998 dengan korban Suyat, Bima Petrus Anugerah, Herman Hendrawan, dan Wiji Thukul.

Ketiga, periode pasca-Sidang Umum 1998, termasuk peristiwa kerusuhan 13-15 Mei 1998. Mereka yang terdokumentasi sebagai korban penghilangan paksa pada periode ini adalah Ucok Munandar Siahaan, Yadin Muhidin, Muhammad Yusuf, Abdun Nasir, dan Hendra Hambali.

SELAMA satu pekan terakhir tiap bulan Mei, berbagai kelompok masyarakat, kelompok korban, dan keluarga korban penghilangan paksa di berbagai negara, terutama di Amerika Latin, Asia, dan Afrika, selalu memperingati Pekan Penghilangan Paksa Internasional (International Week of Disappearances). Ikatan Keluarga Orang Hilang Indonesia (IKOHI) dan Kontras adalah dua di antaranya. Makna peringatan itu, jangan sampai bentuk kejahatan yang termasuk kategori hostis humanis generis (musuh seluruh umat manusia) terjadi lagi.

Sudah lebih dari lima tahun peristiwa itu terjadi. Penguasa sudah berganti-ganti. Berbagai usaha telah ditempuh keluarga korban guna mengetahui nasib dan keberadaan orang-orang yang mereka cintai. Berbagai tempat telah didatangi, instansi-instansi terkait di dalam negeri maupun lembaga-lembaga internasional di luar negeri dilapori. Tetapi, usaha-usaha itu tampaknya belum cukup.

Perhatian dan dukungan masyarakat luas rupanya menjadi kunci keberhasilan penuntutan penyelesaian kasus yang oleh masyarakat internasional digolongkan dalam kejahatan terhadap kemanusiaan (crimes against humanity) dan dinyatakan sebagai musuh seluruh umat manusia di atas bumi (hostis humanis generis).
Penghilangan orang secara paksa (enforced or involuntary disappearances) adalah kejahatan yang paling banyak melanggar hak-hak dasar manusia. Dalam Deklarasi PBB untuk Perlindungan Semua Orang dari Tindakan Penghilangan Paksa (UN Declaration on the Protection of All Person from Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances) yang diundangkan tahun 1992 disebutkan, secara serempak, penghilangan paksa melanggar hak pengakuan di depan hukum (the rights to recognition as a person before the law), hak untuk mendapatkan kebebasan dan keamanan (the rights to liberty and security of person), hak untuk tidak mengalami penyiksaan dan perlakuan atau hukuman yang merendahkan martabat kemanusiaan (the rights not to be subjected to torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment), dan hak untuk hidup (the rights to life).

Sedemikian seriusnya kejahatan penghilangan paksa ini, sehingga negara harus memberikan pertanggungjawaban atas kasus-kasus yang telah terjadi, penghentian serta pencegahan dari keberulangan (prevention from repetition). Tiga hal inilah yang selama lima tahun terakhir menjadi tuntutan para korban dan keluarga korban penghilangan paksa yang tergabung dalam IKOHI beserta Kontras dan para pekerja hak asasi manusia di negeri ini.
JAMINAN tidak berulangnya tindakan penghilangan paksa hanya bisa terjadi bila kasus- kasus yang terjadi telah dipertanggungjawabkan oleh negara. Bentuk pertanggungjawaban negara berupa penyelidikan, yang dalam sistem hukum nasional ada di tangan Komisi Nasional Hak Asasi Manusia (Komnas HAM) sebagaimana diatur UU No 26/2000 mengenai Pengadilan HAM. Dari penyelidikan ini lalu dilakukan penyidikan dan peradilan di Pengadilan HAM.

Dari proses seperti itulah akan terungkap kebenaran seputar pelaku, peristiwa, dan korban, termasuk nasib dan keberadaan para korban. Namun, untuk mencapai hal itu, keseriusan, keberanian, dan independensi lembaga hukum menjadi syarat mutlak. Bila tidak, segala proses yang ditempuh hanya akan berakhir pada tembok tebal "kekebalan hukum" para pelaku (impunitas).

Bila proses penyelidikan (atau dalam makna lebih luas disebut truth seeking) dan peradilan yang fair (prosecution) telah dilakukan, maka negara berarti mengakui adanya pelanggaran HAM berat yang telah terjadi, dan kewajiban negara selanjutnya adalah memenuhi hak korban yang berupa pemulihan hak-haknya atau reparasi dalam bentuk rehabilitasi dan kompensasi. Jadi, hak korban dalam bentuk reparasi adalah kewajiban yang harus diberikan oleh negara begitu proses truth seeking dan prosecution telah dijalankan.

Tidak dituntaskannya kasus kejahatan penghilangan paksa akan mengakibatkan diulangnya kasus yang sama di masa datang. Dalam konteks kita di Indonesia, kekhawatiran ini telah menjadi kenyataan.
Tidak dituntaskannya kasus penghilangan paksa yang terjadi tahun 1997/1998 dan sebelumnya, menyebabkan kasus serupa masih terjadi hingga kini. Contoh signifikan, selain aktivis kemanusiaan Aceh Jafar Sidiq (2001) kita juga menyaksikan kasus serupa yang menimpa Ketua Presidium Dewan Papua Theys Hiyo Eluay (2001), aktivis HAM Aceh Musliadi (2002) yang dihilangkan, dan beberapa hari kemudian ditemukan meninggal. Kasus terakhir yang masih hangat adalah diculiknya dua aktivis Link for Community Development (LCD) Aceh, Muchlis dan Zulfikar, 25 Maret 2003, oleh aparat keamanan saat mereka mendampingi pengungsi di depan Kantor Bupati di Bireuen, Aceh.

MELIHAT perkembangan yang ada, perhatian untuk seluruh elemen masyarakat sipil terhadap tindak kejahatan penghilangan paksa menjadi amat penting. Terlebih lagi saat ini, yang dalam rangka memerangi tindak pidana terorisme pemerintah telah membuat Undang-Undang (UU) tentang Pemberantasan Tindak Pidana Terorisme. Dalam salah satu pasal UU itu disebutkan, penyidik dapat melakukan penahanan atas dasar hasil laporan intelijen (Pasal 26 Ayat 1) dan pemeriksaan oleh Ketua dan Wakil Ketua Pengadilan Negeri dilakukan secara tertutup (Pasal 26 Ayat 3).

Proses politik yang sedang kita hadapi kini juga amat memungkinkan terjadinya kasus penghilangan paksa. Otoritas politik militer yang dominan atas otoritas politik sipil, menjadikan militer bebas bertindak tanpa mendengar suara dan aspirasi kritis masyarakat sipil. Kebijakan pemerintah untuk masalah Aceh adalah salah satu contoh nyata. Belum lagi adanya kontestasi antarelite dan partai politik menjelang Pemilu 2004, akan membuka peluang terjadinya aneka kekerasan politik, dan penghilangan paksa amat mungkin menjadi salah satu manifestasinya.

Jalan menuju keadilan, kemanusiaan, dan perdamaian, tampaknya masih jauh. Dalam salah satu puisinya, Wiji Thukul, korban penghilangan paksa yang sampai saat ini tidak diketahui nasib dan keberadaannya berujar, "…jika kau menghamba pada ketakutan, kita memperpanjang barisan perbudakan."

Mugiyanto Korban penculikan aktivis prodemokrasi 1998, Ketua IKOHI

Dimuat dalam rubrik Opini, Harian Kompas, 28 Mei 2003

Monday, November 08, 2004

Article in KOMPAS Daily on Truth and Reconciliation Commission

"Memoria Passionis" dan Rekonsiliasi
Oleh Mugiyanto

DI tengah kesibukan menjelang Pemilihan Presiden babak kedua 20 September, seyogyanya kita mengingat satu agenda kebangsaan yang amat mendasar pada masa transisi ini, bagaimana negara menghadapi berbagai bentuk pelanggaran HAM yang begitu masif di masa lalu (how to deal with the past). Oleh para pemimpin negara, agenda ini sering disederhanakan menjadi rekonsiliasi nasional. Begitu pentingnya rekonsiliasi nasional, sehingga semua calon presiden-termasuk yang sudah tereliminasi-memasukkannya sebagai salah satu agenda utama mereka.

Kini, DPR sedang membahas UU Rekonsiliasi setelah RUU-nya diserahkan pemerintah 26 Mei 2003 lalu. Panitia Khusus (Pansus) DPR yang membahasnya menyebut sebagai RUU Komisi Kebenaran dan Rekonsiliasi (RUU KKR). Dari namanya, komisi yang nanti terbentuk diharapkan bisa mengungkap kebenaran masa lalu, sehingga ke depan bisa tercipta rekonsiliasi nasional.

Sebagai korban peristiwa pelanggaran HAM, penulis tidak keberatan dengan agenda rekonsiliasi nasional. Rekonsiliasi nasional disadari sebagai syarat pembangunan sebuah entitas kebangsaan. Tetapi yang harus disadari, rekonsiliasi nasional adalah sebuah tujuan. Sebagai tujuan ia adalah hasil proses. Tercapai-tidaknya sebuah tujuan, ditentukan proses yang mengarah pada tujuan itu. Dalam proses-proses inilah interaksi, dialog, dan dinamika terjadi di antara entitas yang hendak direkonsiliasikan itu.

Penting, pengungkapan kebenaran
Perkembangan pembahasan RUU KKR yang kini terjadi di DPR, menurut penulis, sudah sampai taraf mengkhawatirkan, karena itu perlu ditanggapi serius. Di Kompas (20/7) disebutkan, ada kecenderungan kuat, judul yang yang semula bernama RUU Komisi Kebenaran dan Rekonsiliasi akan diubah menjadi RUU Komisi Rekonsiliasi atau RUU Komisi Persatuan Nasional untuk Rekonsiliasi. Lebih jauh disebutkan, unsur TNI di DPR menghendaki penghilangan kata "Kebenaran" dengan alasan agar tercipta suasana rujuk di antara anak bangsa. Bila kebenaran diungkap, rujuk akan kian jauh, karena ada pengadilan. "Mari kita kubur masa lalu dan menuju masa depan," kata anggota Pansus RUU KKR Fraksi TNI, Mayjen TNI Djasri Marin.
Berbeda dengan yang diharapkan anggota Fraksi TNI di DPR, dikhawatirkan akan menjauhkan kita dari tujuan rekonsiliasi nasional sendiri. Yang lebih membahayakan, Fraksi TNI mengajak untuk melupakan sejarah atau kebenaran dengan mengubur masa lalu. Padahal esensi sebuah komisi semacam ini adalah not to forget (tidak untuk melupakan).

Lantas, apa yang salah dengan mengubur masa lalu saat kita hendak melangkah ke depan? Fraksi TNI menilai, mengingat masa lalu sama dengan mengorek luka lama, sehingga dendam akan tumbuh dan berkembang biak. Karena itu rekonsiliasi tak akan terjadi. Sebaliknya, penulis menganggap, mengingat dan mengetahui masa lalu membuat kita bisa belajar dan memetik hikmah dari yang baik dan buruk. Sesuatu yang buruk di masa lalu akan menjadi peringatan agar tidak terulang di masa kini dan mendatang. Ingatan akan masa lalu yang buruk dan hitam, yang penuh derita (memoria passionis) akan menjadikan manusia berusaha menghindarinya.

Dalam konteks pelanggaran HAM masa lalu, pesan-pesan yang muncul dari memoria passionis tidak hanya dirasakan korban, tetapi juga pelaku dan masyarakat luas. Dalam hal ini, ingatan akan kebenaran masa lalu adalah pendidikan publik yang akan memberi sumbangan pada pengetahuan masyarakat tentang penderitaan korban dan membantu menggerakkan masyarakat mencegah peristiwa serupa terjadi di masa depan (Douglas Casses, Paul van Zyl dan Priscilla Hayner; 2000).

Penulis menganggap, ketidaktahuan kelompok korban akan kebenaran masa lalu yang hitam, akan menumbuhkan rasa dendam membabi buta kepada mereka yang dianggap sebagai pelaku. Sebaliknya, saat kebenaran terungkap, segala sesuatu yang sebelumnya dinilai secara semena-mena dan membabi buta menjadi jernih. Rasa keadilan bagi korban (yang secara negatif disebut dendam), menjadi tanggung jawab peradilan.

Kebenaran bagi korban
Sejak RUU KKR dibahas di DPR pertengahan 2003, berbagai lembaga HAM mengkritisinya sebagai kurang relevan, karena tidak adanya syarat-syarat politik yang mendukung. Mereka khawatir RUU KKR tidak bisa mengungkap kebenaran dan memberi keadilan bagi korban. Bahkan kelompok korban pelanggaran berat HAM yang tergabung dalam Solidaritas Kesatuan Korban Pelanggaran HAM (SKKP-HAM) yang merupakan kesatuan korban peristiwa 1965/1966, Tanjung Priok 1984, Lampung 1989, Penculikan 1997/1998, Trisakti-Semanggi I dan II, korban peristiwa Mei 1998 menyatakan menolak RUU KKR karena dinilai menjadi alat impunitas pelanggar HAM. Pernyataan itu disampaikan dalam Rapat Dengar Pendapat Umum (RDPU) dengan Pansus DPR, November 2003.

Menariksekali apa yang selama ini disuarakan para orangtua yang kehilangan anaknya dalam hiruk-pikuk politik. Dalam film Batas Panggung; Kepada Para Pelaku, sebuah film dokumenter tentang kasus penghilangan paksa di Indonesia yang diproduksi Offstream bersama Kontras, Paimin, orangtua Suyat yang hilang diambil penculiknya di Solo awal 1998 berkali kali mengatakan "Karep kulo niku, yen ijih yo ning ngendi, yen wis mati, kuburane yo ing ngendi, ben ora semumpel ing ati" (Saya inginkan, kalau memang-anak saya-masih ada di mana, tetapi kalau sudah mati kuburannya di mana. Biar tidak mengganjal di hati).

Kebenaran, sekali lagi adalah tuntutan utama orangtua korban seperti Paimin. Bukan untuk mendendam, tetapi untuk ketenangan, sehingga bisa melanjutkan hidup yang masih panjang.

Nyawa rekonsiliasi
Salah satu alasan Fraksi TNI menolak pengungkapan kebenaran adalah untuk menghindari pengadilan. Dalam pergaulan internasional pun dikenal tiga hak korban yang telah dirumuskan secara komprehensif oleh Theo van Boven, meliputi hak atas kebenaran (the rights to truth), hak atas keadilan (the rights to justice) dan hak atas pemulihan (the rights to reparation), terdiri atas rehabilitasi, restitusi, dan kompensasi. Pengingkaran atas hak-hak korban hanya akan menjadikan rekonsiliasi nasional yang hendak dicapai menjadi rekonsiliasi yang dipaksakan, rekonsiliasi tanpa nyawa.

Ketika kita sadar, agenda rekonsiliasi nasional adalah agenda kebangsaan yang menentukan jalan hidup bangsa, pengerjaannya pun harus dengan pertimbangan kebangsaan. Pansus DPR menargetkan RUU KKR disahkan menjadi UU sebelum masa tugas mereka berakhir 30 September 2004. Dengan alasan itu, seluruh fraksi DPR setuju menarik puluhan usulan penyempurnaan pasal-pasal dalam Daftar Inventarisasi Masalah (DIM). Terlihat DPR mengerjakan urusan kebangsaan secara pragmatis dan mengejar target. Memoria passionis, ingatan akan penderitaan sama sekali tidak masuk pertimbangan DPR. Bagi mereka, sebagaimana dikatakan Ketua Pansus, Sidharto Danusobroto, setiap UU adalah hasil kompromi politik.

Mugiyanto Korban penculikan 1998, Ketua IKOHI (Ikatan Keluarga Orang Hilang Indonesia)

Dimuat dalam rubrik Opini, Harian Kompas, 27 Juli 2004