Committee Against Torture: Indonesia

CAT session 040 (2008)

(2 July 2008, CAT/C/IDN/CO/2, Concluding observations on second report, paras. 15 and 17)

"The Committee is deeply concerned that local regulations, such as the Aceh Criminal Code, adopted in 2005, introduced corporal punishment for certain new offences. The Committee is concerned that the enforcement of such provisions is under the authority of a ‘morality police’, the Wilayatul Hisbah, which exercises an undefined jurisdiction and whose supervision by public State institutions is unclear. Furthermore, the Committee is concerned that the necessary legal fundamental safeguards do not exist for persons detained by such officials, including the absence of a right to legal counsel, the apparent presumption of guilt, the execution of punishment in public and the use of physically abusive methods (such as flogging or caning) that contravene the Convention and national law. In addition, it is reported that the punishments meted out by this policing body have a disproportionate impact on women (arts. 2 and 16).

The State party should review all its national and local criminal legislations, especially the 2005 Aceh Criminal Code, that authorize the use of corporal punishment as criminal sanctions, with a view to abolishing them immediately, as such punishments constitute a breach of the obligations imposed by the Convention.... State institutions should supervise the actions of the Wilayatul Hisbah and ensure that fundamental legal safeguards apply to all persons who are accused of violating matters of its concern.

The State party should further ensure that a legal aid mechanism exists to guarantee that any person has an enforceable right to a lawyer and other due process guarantees, so that all suspects have the possibility of defending themselves and of lodging complaints of abusive treatment in violation of national law and the Convention."

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