No need to press Indonesia, SBY tells Gillard

No need to press Indonesia, SBY tells Gillard

, 1 November 2010

By: Erwida Maulia

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said Monday there was no need for Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard to “press” Indonesia over its human rights issues in her ongoing visit in Jakarta.

The President was responding to news reports saying that New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) urged Gillard “to press for accountability of abusive Indonesian security forces” through a letter it sent to Australia’s Parliament House last week.

The urge came following the international public scrutiny on Indonesia after the release of two videos in the Internet depicting the alleged torture of Papuans by Indonesian Military (TNI) soldiers.

Gillard is scheduled to have a meeting with Yudhoyono at Merdeka State Palace in Jakarta on Tuesday before the latter heading to Yogyakarta to visit victims of Mount Merapi eruption.

“Australia was asked three days ago to press Indonesia. There is no need for such a pressure to enforce disciplines (here),” Yudhoyono said as he opened a plenary Cabinet meeting at the Presidential Office discussing the recent string of natural disasters hitting the archipelagic country.

“We will do our obligation. There should be no pressure from anyone. TNI will do what it has to do,” he added.

Yudhoyono reiterated that the alleged torture was not part of the Indonesian government’s policy in dealing with security issues.