Transitional Justice from State to Civil Society : Democratization in Indonesia book cover
1st Edition

Transitional Justice from State to Civil Society
Democratization in Indonesia

ISBN 9781032084558
Published June 30, 2021 by Routledge
212 Pages

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Book Description

This book is the first to offer an in-depth analysis of transitional justice as an unfinished agenda in Indonesia’s democracy.

Examining the implementation of transitional justice measures in post-authoritarian Indonesia, this book analyses the factors within the democratic transition that either facilitated or hindered the adoption and implementation of transitional justice measures. Furthermore, it contributes key insights from an extensive examination of ‘bottom-up’ approaches to transitional justice in Indonesia: through a range of case studies, civil society-led initiatives to truth-seeking and local reconciliation efforts. Based on extensive archival, legal and media research, as well as interviews with key actors in Indonesia’s democracy and human rights’ institutions, the book provides a significant contribution to current understandings of Indonesia’s democracy. Its analysis of the failure of state-centred transitional justice measures, and the role of civil society, also makes an important addition to comparative transitional justice studies.

It will be of considerable interest to scholars and activists in the fields of Transitional Justice and Politics, as well as in Asian Studies.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


List of Tables and Charts


1. Introduction: Transitional Justice in Post-Soeharto Indonesia

Transitional Justice: Emergence, Concepts and Trends around the Globe

Transitional Justice in Indonesia

Assessing Transitional Justice and the Implications for Democracy

Explaining Transitional Justice: The Nature of the Democratic Transition

Research Methods and Data Collection

Book Structure

2. Human Rights, Transitional Justice, and Political Transition in Indonesia

Human Rights under the New Order

The Politics and Periods of Transitional Justice in Post-Soeharto Indonesia

The Period of Momentous Change, 1998-2000

The Military in the Period of Momentous Change

The Period of Compromised Mechanisms, 2001-2009

The Military


3. Prosecutions in Cases of Past Human Rights Abuses: the East Timor and Tanjung Priok Trials


Impunity: the Legacy of the Past Repressive Regime

Establishing the Human Rights Courts

Trials on East Timor and Tanjung Priok

The Context: The 1999 East Timor Referendum and Crimes against Humanity

The Trials

The 1984 Tanjung Priok Killings

The Tanjung Priok Trials

Adoption and Implementation of Trials

Assessing Processes and Outcomes—Comparing the Two Trials


4. The Adoption and Annulment of the Law on Truth and Reconciliation Commission


Discourse on Truth and Reconciliation in the Early Years of Political Transition

Getting to a TRC

Truth versus Reconciliation

Debates on Amnesty

Evaluating the Processes and Outcomes of the Adoption of the TRC Law

Acknowledging the Limits of Restorative Justice

Transitional Justice and the Transplacement Nature of Democratisation

The Absence of a Truth Mechanism and its Implications for Indonesia’s Democracy *

The Absence of Political Judgement

The Absence of Deliberative Space to Reflect History and Moral Standards

Local TRCs


5. Human Rights Groups and Transitional Justice Initiatives


Human Rights Movements before Reformasi

Human Rights and the Transitional Justice Agenda during the Democratic Transition

Human Rights Groups, the New Political Elite, and Transitional Justice Agenda in the Early Transition

Transitional Justice from Below: Human Rights Strategies after Reformasi


6. Transitional Justice at Local Level: the Case of Palu, Central Sulawesi


The 1965 Mass Violence in Palu

SKP HAM, Victims’ Mobilisation, and Local Government Responses

Palu’s Reparation Program

Assessing Transitional Justice Initiatives in Palu

Conditions for Transitional Justice

Roles of NGOs and Victims

Local Political Dynamics and the Local Elite


7. Toward Post-Transitional Justice?

Reflecting on Transitional Justice from the Indonesian Experience

Transitional Justice and Democracy: Investigating the Impacts


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Sri Lestari Wahyuningroem is based in the Political Science Department, Faculty of Social and Political Science, Universitas Pembangunan Nasional Veteran Jakarta, Indonesia.