As you are aware, IHRC and CAP submitted a joint submission for the 41st Cycle for the United Nations Working Group taking place at Geneva.
Unfortunately, due to health concerns I was unable to attend the event today. I thank CAP LC Thierry and Members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community for attending this trip and
THE-QUASI GOVERNMENTAL INDONESIAN COUNSEL OF ULEMA(MUI) HAS DECLARED AHMADI MUSLIMS AS “DEVIANT” AND HERETICAL TO ISLAM–PERPETUATING VIOLENCE AGAINST THE COMMUNITY 2008 JOINT MINISTERIAL DECREEEST ABLISHED LEGAL RESTRICTIONS ON FREEDOM OF BELIEF FOR AHMADI MUSLIMS IN INDONESIA DESTRUCTIO OF AHMADI MUSLIM MOSQUES &P ROHIBITION ON BUILDING NEW PLACES OF WORSHIP BANS ON LITERATURE BELONGING TO THEAHMADIYYAMUSLIM COMMUNITY LACK OF ADEQUATE HOUSING FOR MEMBERS OF THE COMMUNITY WHOSE HOMES WERE DESTROYED BY INDONESIAN MILITANTS
And amongst other things the psychological hard Families must endure as a result of the above transcends into the next generation as a harsh memory.
It is clear from our Joint Submission that Indonesia is in clear breach of 26 fundamental breach of its obligations under international law, in particular the ICCPR. There is no justification for the continued regime of religio-political discrimination against Ahmadi Muslims.
As a result, we request you to support the persecuted Ahmadis in Indonesia by requesting the Government of Indonesia to:
A. Review and revoke the 2008 Joint Ministerial Decree, which effectively criminalizes Ahmadi Muslims for practicing and propagating their faith.
B. Take all necessary steps to prevent the MUI from violating the rights of Ahamdi Muslims including preventing the MUI from issuing discriminatory edicts which directly or indirectly infringe upon the rights of Ahmadi Muslims and/or incite or facilitate the religious persecution against Ahmadi Muslims. Further, publicly declare that MUI edicts do not contribute a source of Indonesian law, nor do they carry the force of law or impose legal right or obligation of any sort.
C. Reopen the 14 Ahmadi Mosques that remain s sealed throughout the country and make efforts to safeguard Ahamdi places of worship.
D. Provide proper housing for the Ahmadi refugees forced to flee their village after the 2006 militant attacks. The refugees currently reside in the Transit Mataram Dormitory and the former Praya Hospital, West Nusa Tenggara Province and have been unhoused for 16 years.
E. Take all necessary steps to fulfil the rights of Ahmadi Muslims including ensuring the police fulfill their duties to prevent attacks on Ahmadi Muslims by non-state actors and protect Ahmadi Muslims in the event of such attacks.
F. Fulfill its obligations under Article 6 of the ICCPR on the right to life by not only ensuring equality before the law but also upholding the rule of law, including arrests, investigations, prosecution, and proper sentencing in the event of an attack such as the 2011 attack which killed 3 Ahmadi Muslims.
In 2008, a blatantly discriminatory law established through Joint Ministerial Decree, ordered all Ahmadis “to discontinue the promulgation of interpretations and activities that are deviant from the principal teachings of Islam” and made the spreading of the Ahmadi faith a crime punishable by up to five years in prison. This joint ministerial decree is in clear violation of Article 18 of the ICCPR, which states that “[t]he freedom to manifest religion or belief in worship, observance, practice, and teaching encompasses a broad range of acts . . . including the building of places of worship, the use of ritual formulae and objects, the display of symbols . . . [and] the freedom to establish seminaries or religious schools and the freedom to prepare and distribute religious texts or publications.”
This decree has perpetuated violence against members of the Ahmadi Muslim community and is often used as a justification for radical rhetoric against the community as well as a tool for local officials to create further discriminatory policies at the state and provincial levels. There are over 40 local policies that discriminate against the members of the Ahmadi faith and reference the 2008 Joint Ministerial Decree–since April of 2021 there have been nine new discriminatory policies established that target members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in the West Kalimantan region alone.
UN human rights mechanisms have continued to express concern over the 2008 Joint Ministerial Decree and its effects on members of the Ahmadi Muslim faith. As early as in May of 2008, the Committee Against Torture (CAT) expressed its concern at incitement and acts of violence against persons belonging to minorities, in particular the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community and other minority religious communities. There were persistent, disturbing allegations of a routine failure to investigate such violence and the reluctance on the part of the police and authorities to provide the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community with adequate protection or to conduct prompt, impartial and effective investigations into such acts.
In April 2008, the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion stated that a ban on the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Indonesia might increase the risk of attacks on Ahmadiyya Muslims by vigilante groups. Replying to a communication following the issuance of the Joint Ministerial Decree in June 2008 regarding members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Indonesia, the Government recalled that Indonesia prided itself on its harmonious mosaic of diverse communities living together and practicing several religions of their choice, as long as their religious practices did not impinge on public order and the well-being of society as a whole.
In February 2011, four special procedures communicated their concern at increased attacks against the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community over the previous year.
Despite these ongoing communications, Indonesia has failed to repeal the 2008 decree which continues to be a source of state sponsored persecution for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
I am grateful to you all who have attended this side event today in Geneva and would like to thank you all for your support in advance.