General Wiranto was born on 4 April 1947 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. At the time of the events, he was Commander in Chief of the Indonesian Army and Minister of Defence. He was relieved of these functions in February 2000 by President Abdurrahman Wahid and is now in retirement.
The accusations of criminal responsibility against him go back to the events which took place in East Timor in 1999. Around 1400 people were killed in the months leading up to a referendum on independence for the region, organised by the United Nations on 30 August 1999, and during the days following this vote. In addition, more than 250’000 people were transferred by force or fled to West Timor or Indonesia. A large number of people were also victims of other violations of human rights, notably of torture and rape. These crimes were carried out by the militia with the support and coordination of members of the armed forces, the police and the Indonesian Civilian Authorities in order to influence the outcome of the referendum and to put off adoption of the results of the referendum.
On 25 February 2003, General Wiranto, together with seven other high placed military and civilian personalities, were indicted by the Serious Crimes Unit, a body set up by the United Nations Transitional Administration of East Timor(UNTAET) *****
On 25 February 2003, General Wiranto, together with seven other high placed military and civilian personalities, were indicted by the Serious Crimes Unit, a body set up by the United Nations Transitional Administration of East Timor(UNTAET) by adopting Resolution 1272(1999) of the Security Council, and placed under the authority of the Deputy General Prosecutor for Serious Crimes. This group was commissioned with giving assistance to the Timorese authorities in prosecuting the most serious crimes, such as genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes, which were committed between 1st January and 25 October 1999.
Based on the act of indictment, the accused, which included General Wiranto, were charged with murder, deportation and persecution as crimes against humanity. According to the same document, the Indonesian Authorities wielded effective control over the militia which committed these crimes. They were therefore implicated through their superior responsibility.
On 10 May 2004, the Serious Crimes Unit issued an arrest warrant against General Wiranto. However the Indonesian Authorities refused to cooperate with the Timorese Courts. General Wiranto was even a candidate in the Indonesian Presidential elections in July 2004.
Trial Watch would like to remind its users that any person charged by national or international authorities is presumed innocent until proven guilty.