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Country Reports
INDONESIA , Landmine Monitor Report 2001
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Mine Ban Policy

Indonesia signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 4 December 1997, but has not yet ratified. A Ministry of Foreign Affairs official told Landmine Monitor that there are no major obstacles to ratification, but that the landmines issue is a lower priority for the government than weapons of mass destruction. The government is in the process of ratifying the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the Biological Weapons Convention. The Mine Ban Treaty is next on the schedule. President Abdurrachman Wahid has authorized the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to conduct a preliminary study for ratification of the Mine Ban Treaty.[1]

A Foreign Ministry official has said the ratification process may take two or three years depending on Indonesia’s internal political and financial situation.[2] The process will involve different institutions including the Foreign Affairs Ministry, which is taking the initiative, the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, the Ministry of Finance, Customs, PT Pindad (Army Industry), the Presidential Secretariat, the Headquarters of Indonesian Armed Forces and the Parliament (Commission I). The Foreign Affairs Ministry will consult with all these institutions and with other sectors such as NGOs, academia, and the press. After each consultation the Foreign Affairs Minister will report the outcome to the President for approval. Finally, the ratification document will be submitted to the Parliament for approval.

Indonesia participated in the Second Meeting of States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty in September 2000. As it has done since 1996, Indonesia voted in favor of the pro-ban UN General Assembly resolution in November 2000. It did not participate in the Standing Committee meetings in December 2000 and May 2001.

Indonesia is not a party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) and, unlike the year before, did not attend the Second Annual Conference of the States Parties to CCW Amended Protocol II in December 2000. A Foreign Ministry official said that Indonesia did not need to participate because it had already signed the Mine Ban Treaty, which covered landmines.[3]

For the second anniversary of the Mine Ban Treaty on 1 March 2001, the Indonesian Campaign to Ban Landmines (INACBL) joined with the Thai Campaign to Ban Landmines and the Cambodian Campaign to Ban Landmines in sending letters to government representatives urging ratification. As part of the campaign initiatives in the region, INACBL also distributed the ASEAN edition of the Landmine Monitor Report 2000 to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Defense, and NGOs. A Ministry of Foreign Affairs official commented that the Landmine Monitor initiative is a positive step toward increasing NGO participation in Indonesia’s effort to ratify the Mine Ban Treaty and moving toward the realization of the world peace.[4]

Production, Transfer, Stockpiling

Indonesia is not believed to have ever produced or exported antipersonnel mines. As reported in Landmine Monitor Report 2000, Indonesia is thought to have a limited stockpile of antipersonnel mines imported from the United States, the former Czechoslovakia, and the former Yugoslavia. One official has said the mines are for training purposes only and thus would not have to be destroyed under the terms of the Mine Ban Treaty.[5] More recently a Foreign Ministry official commented that the Mine Ban Treaty is a “humanitarian convention” not a “disarmament convention,” and in this regard there is no “force majeure” to investigate and control the stockpile belonging to any country by United Nations.[6]


See Landmine Monitor Report 2000 for conflicting reports on possible use of antipersonnel mines by Indonesian forces in the 1960s and 1970s.

In 2000 and 2001 there were no allegations that the government used landmines in the separatist conflicts in Aceh, Ambon, and West Papua. [See separate report on East Timor.] However, it appears that rebels in Aceh have used Improvised Explosive Devices (homemade landmines) to target vehicles.[7] It is unclear if these were remote-controlled, command-detonated mines. According to press accounts:

  • two mobile brigade police troopers were killed by a landmine on 22 March 2001 in West Aceh;[8]
  • five army trucks avoided a landmine trap on the Medan-Banda Aceh highway on 23 March 2001 in North Aceh;[9]
  • a truck carrying a policeman and three others overturned after it passed over a landmine trap and was hit by a mortar on 14 April 2001 in North Aceh; a Free Aceh Movement (GAM) spokesman claimed responsibility for the ambush;[10]
  • a marine was killed and five others wounded when their car hit a landmine in South Aceh on 23 May 2001.[11]

Landmine Problem and Mine Action

Indonesia is not considered mine-affected. There have been conflicting reports about mine use, and mine casualties, in the past.[12] Indonesia has not contributed to international mine action programs since 1998. In Solo, Central Java there are three Orthopedic Hospitals that produce artificial limbs, but it is unknown if any possible mine victims received prosthetics as the hospitals do not keep records on the cause of amputations of their patients.[13]

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[1] Interviews with Suryana Sastradiredja, Foreign Affairs Ministry, Jakarta, 26 February 2001 and 12 April 2001.
[2] Interview with Suryana Sastradiredja, Foreign Affairs Ministry, Jakarta, 26 February 2001.
[3] Ibid.
[4] Ibid.
[5] Interview with Major General Ferry Tinggogoy, 26 April 2000; telephone interview with Tinggogoy by Landmine Monitor/HRW, 25 July 2000. See Landmine Monitor Report 1999 and 2000 for more detail.
[6] Interviews with Suryana Sastradiredja, Foreign Affairs Ministry, 26 February 2001 and 12 April 2001.
[7] Telephone interview with Colonel Edy Wirawam, Chief of Public Relations, Department of Defense, 2 May 2001.
[8] “Wahid trip to Aceh cancelled, eight killed in violence,” Agence France Press, (Banda Ache), 23 March 2001.
[9] “Civilian killed, army convoy escapes landmine trap in Aceh,” Agence France Presse, (Banda Ache), 24 March 2001.
[10] “5 Killed in Fresh Violence in Aceh, Indonesia,” Xinhua (Jakarta), 15 April 2001.
[11] “At least five people killed in Aceh violence,” Agence France Presse (Banda Aceh), 24 May 2001.
[12] See Landmine Monitor Report 2000, pp. 452-453.
[13] Telephone interview with Dr. Fadlan Maalip, Director of Orthopedic Hospital “Dr. Suharso,” Solo, 10 April 2000.