Indonesia: Focus Group Discusses the Draft Criminal Code

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Participants to the event. 

CMN joined MPs, the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Komnas HAM, Komnas Perempuan and NGOs to review the definitions of core international crimes, liabilities and defences in the draft criminal code

On Wednesday 23 March, the CMN co-convened a high level Focus Group of leading Indonesian criminal justice reformers. Meeting under the Chatham House rule, the Focus Group reviewed the status of the draft criminal code and considered the proposed provisions on the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, as well as the defences and liabilities laid out in the June 2015 draft.

Revision of the Criminal Code has been a priority for recent governments with two drafts being published during 2015. The June 2015 draft utilises the definitions of genocide and crimes against humanity of Law 26/2000, which conferred jurisdiction on specialised Human Rights Courts for the investigation and adjudication of gross human rights violations, as well as several war crimes. The draft also introduces international liabilities of command responsibility and superior responsibility as well as the concept of superior orders. The Focus Group took place in advance of the review of the general principles section of the draft criminal code, led by the government’s Working Committee on the Criminal Code (Panja KUHP). During April and May the Panja KUHP will review provisions on superior orders as well as the liabilities of command and superior responsibility. The review session forms part of the national deliberative process which is expected to continue until mid 2017.

Three key areas for the attention of the Working Committee were identified during the Focus Group, including the legal classifications of the core international crimes, the applicability of command or superior responsibility to the crime of genocide and the scope of superior orders as a legitimate defence. In addition, the Focus Group evaluated different legislative approaches to incorporating core international crimes into domestic law, drawing on the National Implementing Legislation Database of the ICC Legal Tools Project.

As a consequence of the Focus Group, the CMN will produce a series of briefing papers for the Working Committee and its expert members.

The Focus Group was hosted by the Case Matrix Network, in cooperation with the Institute for Criminal Justice Reform (ICJR), the Institute for Human Rights Research and Advocacy (ELSAM), the National Coalition for Criminal Code Reform and the Human Rights Resource Centre (HRCC).

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