An international panel of judges has concluded that Indonesia’s mass killing of 1965 were crimes against humanity, and that the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom were all complicit in the crimes.
The report estimates that 400,000 to 500,000 people, believed to be associate with the communist party, were killed by military death squads, but indicates that official secrecy around these numbers makes the actual figure hard to gauge.
- 400-500 Indonesians killed in anti-communist purge at height of cold war
- Report found Australia continued to back army despite knowing about the killings
- President Joko Widodo has refused to apologize for historic murders.
In the damning report issued Wednesday, the judges listed a number of allegations which they found to be well founded; including inhumane, ruthless torture, unjustifiable imprisonment and “forced labor that might well have amounted to enslavement.”
The judges found Indonesia responsible for the crimes and called for the current administration to apologize and to institute investigation and prosecution of those perpetrators that are still alive.
“I don’t want other people to dictate to this nation. We will settle it our way with universal values. This is my comment – I am quite strong about it.” Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Panjaitan.
“Furthermore, the archives should be opened and the real truth on these crimes against humanity should be established,” the judges said.
The tribunal’s report found Australia, the U.S., and the UK complicit by using propaganda to manipulate international opinion in favor of the Indonesian army.
The report said that the UK, “…..Shared the US aim of seeking to bring about the overthrow of president Sukarno.”
“They continued with this policy even after it had become abundantly clear that killings were taking place on a mass and indiscriminate basis. On balance, this appears to justify the charge of complicity,” the report said.
The report also detailed horrifying details of rape and torture, including burning body parts, water torture, electric shock, pulling out fingernails and tying victims inside sacks of snakes.
There were also accusations that communists were forced to drink soldiers’ urine, while in other cases victims’ ears were cut off and they were forced to consume them.
“The final ruling of the IPT 1965 judges have opened my eyes, and maybe the young generation, that the events in 1965 need to be discussed so that we get a complete picture of what happened at that time.” Journalist Febriana Firdaus.