Campaigners condemned the state visit of the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to Britain today over widespread human rights violations in the country.
President Yudhoyono arrived in London for a three-day visit during which time he is scheduled to discuss trade agreements, foreign policy and dine with the royal family at Buckingham Palace.
But human rights campaigners gathered outside Downing Street demanding the release of prisoners of conscience from Indonesian jails and an end to arms sales to the country.
Foreign Secretary William Hague announced on Tuesday his determination to "forge strong partnerships" with Indonesia and other countries in the region.
"As well as having one of the world's most thriving economies, Indonesia is in the vanguard of the political change shaping Asia," he said.
The Foreign Office stated that total trade with Indonesia was £2.4 billion in 2011 with leading investors including BP, Total Oil and Shell.
Prime Minister David Cameron led a trade delegation in April to Indonesia which included a number of arms companies, most notably BAE Systems, the firm that controversially sold Hawk Fighter Jets to the Suharto dictatorship which were used in the suppression of East Timor.
In the run-up to the visit, Tapol, which promotes human rights, peace and democracy in Indonesia, called for an immediate ban on the sale to Indonesia of any military equipment that may be used for internal repression.
Tapol co-ordinator Paul Barber said: "While British businesses are no doubt eagerly anticipating the president's visit, victims of human rights abuses will derive little comfort from the prospect of increased arms sales and ongoing training of Indonesian security forces."
Tapol said that while Indonesia has made progress in its transition from dictatorship to democracy since the downfall of former president Suharto in May 1998 serious human rights concerns remained.
Mr Barber added: "The news that the president is to receive a prestigious honour from the Queen is a gross affront to those who have suffered violations at the hands of successive Indonesian governments."
Amnesty International also expressed concerns over human rights violations, including restrictions on freedom of expression and excessive use of force by Indonesian security forces.
The charity urged supporters to write to the authorities demanding the immediate and unconditional release of all prisoners of conscience in Indonesia.
If you appreciated this article then please consider donating to the Morning Star's Fighting Fund to ensure we can keep developing your paper.
Foreign Minister Alistair Burt's admission that the Cameron government has "supported" a survey of attitudes to US drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal areas amounts to a tacit admission of British involvement.
As Britain faces a new housing crisis we can learn from an occasion when tenants banded together to beat their landlord - and won new council housing
Iain Duncan Smith's brainchild came into force at the end of last month. It's bad news for almost everyone