Jakarta. Supreme Court Chief Justice Hatta Ali said on Thursday (18/01) that the court is paying attention to gender issues and committed to increase women's dignity in the country.
Speaking during the 2018 Indonesia-Netherlands Rule of Law and Security Update at Atmajaya University in Jakarta, Hatta referred to a Supreme Court regulation issued in July last year on guidelines for trials of women's cases as one of the latest steps the court has taken to address women's concerns.
"With this new Supreme Court regulation, judges must be more careful during trials of women's cases," Hatta said.
The Institute for Criminal Justice Reform (ICJR) said prior to the regulation, there were inconsistencies in judges' perceptions of the judicial process involving women. In a statement, the ICJR said some verdicts were based on considerations that prevented women from achieving justice.
Hatta acknowledged that instances where women were questioned in sexual assault trials on their clothing, or about being out at night. He emphasized that the new regulation now prohibits judges from asking such questions because it "discredits" women.
"[Gender issues] receive a lot of attention in the Supreme Court. Now that such questions are no longer permitted in court ... this is how we elevate women's dignity," Hatta said.
He added that the Supreme Court has ongoing cooperation with its Australian counterpart on gender issues.
Hatta said there are currently around 1,700 female judges, constituting nearly 30 percent of the total in the archipelago.