Protesters condemn minister’s statement blaming victims for being raped

Source – October 17, 2012
Women protest in Jakarta against statement by Education Minister M. Nuh - October 17, 2012 (Detik)
Women protest in Jakarta against statement by Education Minister M. Nuh - October 17, 2012 (Detik)

Riana Afifah, Jakarta – Following the offensive statement by the Minister for Education and Culture about a female high-school student victim of rape in Depok, namely ASS, the Women’s Alliance Against Rape (APTP) held a protest action in front of the Department of Education offices on Wednesday October 17.

APTP member Dhyta Caturani said that the group is calling on Education Minister Mohammad Nuh to issue a new statement expressing his support for protecting teenage women from sexual violence and discrimination.

“Don’t let there be any more talk that paints teenage women in a bad light because they become pregnant or because they become victims of rape”, said Caturani, when sought out in front of the Education Ministry on Jl. Jendral Sudirman in Jakarta on Wednesday morning.

The group is also calling on the Education Minister as a public official that is responsible for education in Indonesia to take the case seriously. Moreover in the changes to the education curriculum that are currently being discussed should included sex and reproductive health education for teenagers.

“This is important so teenagers can avoid sexual violence such as rape, sexual harassment and [so they have] knowledge about [their] bodies and sexuality”, said Caturani.

Caturani added that in order that there is no repeat of this, they are also demanding that the Education Minster reprimand schools that commit acts of discrimination without caring about the rights of victims.

The demonstration by scores of women is continuing although the flow of traffic on Jl. Jenderal Sudirman has not been disrupted and is moving smoothly.

[Perempuan Unjuk Rasa, Protes Pernyataan Mendikbud – Rabu, 17 Oktober 2012. Translated by James Balowski.]