Indonesia and Russia have signed an extradition cooperation agreement so that the two countries have a legal basis to apply for the extradition of criminals from either country, Tempo are reporting.
Russian Minister of Justice Konstantin Anatolievich Chuychenko came directly to Bali on Friday to attend the signing ceremony of the extradition cooperation agreement with Indonesia’s Minister of Law and Human Rights Yasonna H. Laoly.
After the signing ceremony, Minister Laoly said the agreement is important for Indonesia and Russia because it makes it easier for law enforcement officials of the two countries to take action against crimes, especially transnational crimes, say Tempo.
“There are lots of transnational crimes such as cybercrime, money laundering, narcotics, corruption, and so on,” Minister Laoly said.
“This extradition agreement makes it easier for us to work together to deal with cross-border crimes,” he added.
The extradition agreement is a follow-up to the mutual legal assistance cooperation that was agreed upon by the two countries in 2019.
“We have signed a mutual legal assistance agreement in 2019 in Moscow. The legal assistance cooperation is for the criminal sector,” he said.
“At that time, we planned to sign this collaboration when President Putin visited Indonesia. But due to COVID-19, that didn’t happen. We waited for it and now is the time,” he added.
Even though it had just been signed, Minister Laoly explained that the agreement would only take effect when Indonesia ratifies the agreement in law. The central government will immediately process it so that Indonesia has a legal basis to submit an extradition request or even accept an extradition request from Russia, say Tempo.
Meanwhile, Chuychenko said he believes that the extradition treaty is a good step for the two countries for strengthening cooperation in law enforcement.
The two countries’ cooperation will be more systematic and productive in the future, he said, adding that the Russian Government is committed to strengthening its partnership with Indonesia.
After signing the extradition agreement, Russia and Indonesia plan to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cooperation in the field of cybersecurity and legal assistance for civil cases. The agreement is the first extradition agreement reached by Indonesia with a European country, say Tempo.
Proposals to form extradition cooperation have been discussed since 2016, but negotiations took place only in 2018.
During the negotiations, the government of Indonesia was represented by the Directorate General of General Legal Administration of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights; Coordinating Ministry for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs; as well as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Then, the police; attorney; Corruption Eradication Commission; Center for Reporting and Analysis of Financial Transactions; National Narcotics Agency; and the National Counterterrorism Agency also represented Indonesia during the negotiations.
Since 2017, Indonesia has made four extradition requests to Russia, one of which is currently being processed by the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights.