Peer2Peer4Justice Goes Online During COVID-19

The Embassy collaborates with the Center of International Legal Cooperation on a project called Peer 2 Peer 4 Justice. This project aims to contribute to the sustained, long term peer to peer partnerships and knowledge exchange between Indonesian and Dutch legal professionals in support of justice reform in Indonesia.  As such,  it  facilitates existing and new partnerships for example between the Supreme Court of Indonesia (Mahkamah Agung) and the Supreme Court of the Netherlands (Hoge Raad), the Ombudsman of Indonesia (ORI) and the National Ombudsman of the Netherlands and the Indonesian Probation Service (Dirjen Pas) and the Dutch Probation Service (Reclassering Nederland).

©Dutch Embassy Indonesia

In addition, P2P seeks to further strengthen the Indonesian – Dutch network of legal professionals by supporting the Working Group Indonesia to ensure its role as prime network of and for Indonesian and Dutch rule of law professionals and main driver to steering the bilateral relation.

Shortly after the start of the project kicked-off, COVID-19 disrupted the world and affected the implementation of all project activities. As a result, missions of the Dutch Supreme Court to Indonesia and the visit of a delegation from the Indonesia Directorate of Correction (Dirjen Pas) to the Netherlands were cancelled. We still feel the impact COVID-19 today since we cannot travel or gather in large groups. However, these constraints have also created opportunities for how we work together.

©Dutch Embassy Indonesia

CILC organized virtual courtesy calls between the Supreme Court in Indonesia and the Netherlands in April and June 2020. The courtesy calls came at an excellent time since both Supreme Courts are undergoing a change of leadership, with a new Chief Justice in Indonesia and a new President of the Supreme Court in the Netherlands appointed. The meetings were used to congratulate the new leaders of both institutions and getting acquainted with one another and the project. Moreover, both leaderships agreed upon the development of an online training program as alternative format to the cancelled working missions. In September this online program will be implemented together with the newly established case selection team of the Indonesian Supreme Court.

A third virtual meeting took place on 20 July between Dirjen Pas and the Netherlands Probation Service. This was the first meeting with the recently inaugurated Director-General of Correction Mr. Reinhard Silitonga. From the Netherlands Probation Services, the discussions were led by Anne-Marie Bruist, the Regional Director of Probation Service in East Netherlands. The meeting was also attended by Ms. Brechtje Klandermans, Deputy Head of Political Affairs at the Netherlands Embassy in Jakarta and was facilitated by CILC.

©Dutch Embassy Indonesia

This virtual meeting created an excellent opportunity to present the Peer 2 Peer 4 Justice project and a recent tailor-made training – Strengthening Probation Services both funded by the Dutch government. During the meeting, both Dirjen Pas and the Netherlands Probation Services confirmed their interest and commitment to work together to deal with overcrowding in prisons, increase the capacity of staff and reinforce the use of alternative sanctions in Indonesia.