Prabowo's Naming as Defense Minister Upsets Human Rights Activist



Laila Afifa

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Dozens of human rights activists gathered to protest President Joko Widodo’s decision in naming archrival Prabowo Subianto as Minister of Defense. 

    “We are truly disappointed by the Cabinet-commissioning of generals who are alleged human rights violators,” said Sumarsih, the presidium of the Victims Solidarity Network for Justice (JSKK), on Thursday, Oct. 24.

    The group protested Prabowo’s naming as a state minister during the routine “Kamisan” protest held every Thursday. Yesterday’s gathering marks the 607th consecutive time the group has held the protest. 

    The JSKK also sent a formal letter to the president for appointing the individual heavily incriminated in the kidnappings of 1998 pro-democracy activists. 

    “As a Kopassus general in command in 1998, [he] formed the ‘Mawar Team’ to conduct kidnappings on 23 pro-democracy activists,” the letter said. 

    The activists also demanded President Jokowi to annul Prabowo Subianto’s position in the president’s final-term presidency. They also urged the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs to immediately solve severe human rights violations in the past.