KOMPAS.com - Indonesia and Russia signed an extradition agreement Friday, March 31, to strengthen cooperation against transnational crimes. It is the first extradition agreement Indonesia has reached with a European country.
Indonesian Minister of Law and Human Rights Yasonna Laoly said, “This agreement is a very important step because it will help Indonesia to take legal actions in combating transnational crimes, ranging from cybercrime, money laundering, narcotics, corruption, and others.”
He did not elaborate on the details of the agreement or any specific figure that was targeted by Indonesia or Russia. But he added, “Although the mechanism for repatriating the perpetrators of criminal acts can also be carried out through deportation and immigration cooperation, this extradition cooperation will remain the main option because it's formal and binding [to] us.”
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The extradition agreement is a continuation of the mutual legal assistance agreement (MLA) in criminal matters that was signed in Moscow on Dec. 13, 2019.
“After having [the] MLA, and now followed by [the] extradition agreement, it will further strengthen our cooperation,” said Yasonna.
Indonesia has had diplomatic ties with Russia since 1950 and its relations have remained good despite the war in Ukraine.
In a press statement sent by the Russian Embassy in Jakarta to VOA, Russian Justice Minister Konstantin Chuychenko said having the extradition treaty with Indonesia “was an important step for us in fighting transnational crime, protecting crime victims, and restoring justice and security.”
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He said the agreement would address “a number of issues in interstate legal cooperation and prospects for cooperation in the legal assistance in civil and commercial matters, the transfers of prisoners and improvement of regulation in nonprofit sectors.”
In his speech, Yasonna referred to Russia’s strategic position as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, the Group of 20 large economies, and the Eurasian Economic Union that he hopes “can also help Indonesia in building its reputation and credibility in terms of security and law enforcement, as well as open a wider network of cooperation with countries that have already had cooperation with Russia.”
The signing of this extradition agreement was in line with President Joko Widodo’s directive to make Indonesia a member of the Financial Action Task Force “to assist and maintain the stability and integrity of the financial system and law enforcement, which focuses on eradicating money laundering” as well as the financing of terrorist activity.
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