INDONESIA: Elegy For “Mbokde” (Aunty) Suu Kyi

Gugus Elmo Rai’is, Indonesian Journalist

Tracing back the life history of Aung San Suu Kyi is like enjoying an elegy in the form of a song containing lamentation and sorrow. Not only for Suu Kyi, but also all citizens of Myanmar. An elegy, which may engender a new perception, if the power is like an intoxicating ‘tuak’. Even more than the premise of Lord Acton, when the power tends absolute it tends to corrupt.” Then, before the end of his term in office and before entering his pension/retirement period, General Min Aung Hlaing conducted a coup d’etat which is a tradition in the country formerly named Burma.

The reason for the capture of Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint, by the new military junta, under the command of General Min Aung Hlaing, is fairly naïve and ridiculous. Although it was started by a preliminary attack which was performed by the opposing party Union Solidarity and Development (Party (USDP), IF the Suu Kyi Party, National League for Democratic (NLD) fraudulently obtain the wing. Supposedly, however, the reason for the coup d’etat performed by Min Aung was intended to save his family’s business and his cronies in the military.

The desire is fairly naïve, because in the Myanmar Constitution, the military holds a special position. It can obtain a quota of, at least, 25% of the seats in Parliament. And, the quota includes three ministers who belong to the triumvirate category, namely the Ministers of Domestic Affairs, Défense, and Foreign Affairs. Any of the quota of power provided by the Constitution that remains make the Myanmar military ‘lustful’ to shake the chair of power. They want to seize it out of the hand of the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize Award of 1991.

The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Suu Kyi and is also given to human rights activists. The award is provided by the above Institution which is based in Oslo. Previously, I even conferred with the Norwegian Embassy in Jakarta after the July 27 incident. At that time, I questioned whether the General Chairman of PDIP, Megawati Soekarnoputri was qualified to receive the same award?

The question, after receiving the Nobel Peace Prize Award, as a democratic and humanitarian activist, is the plan of Aung San Suu Kyi to gain peace for Myanmar. In particular, it is in facing the issue of the Rohingya, after she was in power and after her NLD party won in the General Election 2015. Nota bene, to the benefit of domestic politics, the majority of Buddhist followers of Aung San Suu Kyi tend to be silent. To be considered was the intense international pressure due to genocide and ethnic cleansing. Even, Aung San Suu Kyi ever argued, as if Suu Kyi was contracted by her second who was drunken by power, by ignoring various external oppressions.

Whereas, to date, the bar action performed by the government of Myanmar against Arakan ethnic or more popularly referred to as Rakhine or Rohingya is still performed. Ethnic cleansing is still performed massively although it has taken hundred thousands of victims.

Based on the record of social institution, Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), during the last period of August 2017, around 6,700 persons died only within a period of one month. Barbar action performed by the government, the majority of which is Simo-Tibet tribe has become a terrifying terror for around 1.3 million Moslem residents of Rohingya.

The attitude of international community against the issue of Rohingya is also seemed to sink in and out. Whereas, the bar action which is categorized as genocide and ethnic cleansing was performed massively and systematically. Because it was performed by community and involve an element of military. Although, from historic perspective, they are part of Myanmar citizens because they have migrated from Bengal since ten years ago.

The cold reaction of international reaction against the issue of Rohignya. Moreover, aster the emergence of coup d’etat, will automatically extend the suffering of Arakan Tribe. They will always be stalked by dangers in the form of torture, rape, and suicide. Whereas, the effort of law enforcement may be performed, minimally by applying the jurisprudence of Slobodan Milosevic case which has committed similar crime against Moslems in Bosnia and Kosovo. Finally, by using the instrument of Just Cogan, International Criminal Tribunal for The Former Yugoslavia, in Den Haag judged Slobodan Milosevic, February 2002, with an accusation that he has committed a war crime. Finally, Slobodan died there.

The question is, after the emergence of coup d’etat case and issue of Rohingya, how is further attitude of international community in encouraging various efforts for enforcing human rights internationally. Is the community of ASEAN, wherein Myanmar is still a member thereof, may still be expected?

As a state party, Burma or Myanmar must be submissive and obedient against the norms having been agreed (treaty making law) in bilateral agreement among nations of ASEAN. Furthermore, this region is deemed as a region with the most cohesive extent of cooperation in the world. Then, as an ‘elder’ nation and deemed as a leader because the largest territory and total population, Indonesia must be able to initiate the efforts of conflict settlement, peacefully or forcefully, and may not close the eyes.

The problem is whether the community having been bound in the bilateral agreement among ASEAN Nations pertain to the issues of Human Rights. Furthermore, this region has possess a human rights institution named ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission On Human Rights (AICHR). Unfortunately, this institution does not have authority for investigation and execution, because it has been entangled the Term of Reference (TOR) of ASEAN declaration, particularly in article 20 F which states, there must be no mutual intervention among members of ASEAN.

Practically, based on the provision of AICHR, like an ‘arisan’ institution, because the leader is performed in turns without being able to do more. Just to equalize perception and improve comprehension concerning human rights among members of ASEAN. With such condition, it can be understood that the attitude of government of ASEAN countries which looks ambivalent in facing the issues of coup d’etat and issue of Rohingya.

Thus, do not expect the government of ASEAN countries to take radical measures by disconnecting diplomatic relationship with Myanmar if the action of breach of human rights will continue. Although diplomatic effort has not, hitherto, achieved the result. It means, the issue of enforcement of HAM has not become a priority scale for ASEAN Nations, although, economically, ASEAN nation experience a significant growth. Bilateral cooperation is still in the limitation of cooperation, economy, and culture, while human rights have a distended position. This is a large homework for ASEAN Nations.

Document Type : Article
Document ID : AHRC-ART-013-2021
Countries : Indonesia,
Issues : Administration of justice, Civil and Political Rights, Democracy,