Indonesia Votes Against Adoption of Responsibility to Protect; Minister Explains

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Laila Afifa

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  • Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi walk as they attend the ASEAN leaders' summit at the the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) secretariat building in Jakarta, Indonesia, April 24, 2021. Courtesy of Muchlis Jr/Indonesian Presidential Palace/Handout via REUTERS

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi walk as they attend the ASEAN leaders' summit at the the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) secretariat building in Jakarta, Indonesia, April 24, 2021. Courtesy of Muchlis Jr/Indonesian Presidential Palace/Handout via REUTERS

    TEMPO.CO, JakartaIndonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry led by Retno Marsudi released a statement on reasons why Indonesia voted against the adoption of the United Nations (UN) principle of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P). As quoted from the statement dated May 17, 2021, it is said that the R2P does not need a standing annual agenda item.

    Secondly, any propositions or ideas that seek to enrich the discussion on the concept should not derail the perimeter set out by the 2005 World Summit outcome document.

    The ministry, however, asserted that Indonesia’s position should not be mistaken as against the R2P given that the country joined the consensus that adopted the concept as written in resolution 60/1 in 2005.

    Besides, Indonesia is familiar with the principles and norms of the Responsibility to Protect which do not confine only to a certain or specific group of states or regions.

    As Indonesia stated before, the ministry underlined, “In our view, within – and specifically within the framework of the prevention of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity, that the [so-called] three pillars of R2P are solid enough to withstand any and every assault.”

    Earlier, Amnesty International Indonesia Executive Director Usman Hamid expressed disappointment over the government’s decision to vote against the adoption of the UN resolution.

    “We lament Indonesia’s action that declares no in the vote at the UN General Assembly regarding the adoption of the Responsibility to Protect on issues about very serious crimes in Palestine, Myanmar, and Syria, particularly crimes against humanity. In fact, this type of crime is a serious human rights violation and violates Law No. 26/2000,” said Usman.

    Usman argued that Indonesia’s position showed its poor commitment to advancing and protecting human rights globally. In the vote, Indonesia is on par with 14 other countries that have a poor reputation for human rights. 

    Read: Indonesians Urge More Solidarity Actions for Myanmar

    SUCI SEKARWATI