Oral statement at UN Human Rights Council
23 September 2017

Oral statement at UN Human Rights Council


On 21 September 2017, L4L delivered an oral statement during the 36th Session of the UN Human Rights Council. During this session, the Universal Periodic Review Outcome Report of Indonesia was adopted. Earlier, L4L had already submitted a NGO-submission for this UPR-session of Indonesia.

The statement reads as follows:

Lawyers for Lawyers welcomes Indonesia’s decision to accept some of the recommendations made at its 3rd UPR relating to the protection of human rights defenders and the facilitation of their work. We call on Indonesia to effectively implement all recommendations without delay, especially regarding lawyers.

Protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms requires effective access to legal services provided by an independent legal profession. Fundamental to improving human rights for the people of Indonesia is a justice system that provides due process for rights holders and allows lawyers to work independently without fear of harassment or intimidation.

Lawyers for Lawyers is particularly concerned that human rights lawyers working in in conflict areas, such as the province of Papua, are sometimes subjected to improper interference or attempts to put pressure on them by members of law enforcement agencies or investigative bodies. Furthermore, lawyers are regularly denied the opportunity to meet with their clients in full confidentiality. Some lawyers are even subjected to criminal proceedings and physical attacks in connection to their legitimate professional activities.

We are also concerned about a draft Bill on Advocates. Although the bill proposed in 2014 contains several provisions that should further enable Indonesian advocates to practice law in freedom and independence, it falls short of international standards regarding the limitation of government intervention.

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