Human Rights Watch said there are currently almost 19,000 people in Indonesia who are either shackled or locked up in a confined space.
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In a small faith healing center in rural Indonesia, Sulaiman chanted in a confused fashion, tugged at a chain attached to his ankle, and shifted restlessly on a hard, wooden bench. The emaciated man has been chained up for the past two years, and is one of thousands of Indonesians with a mental illness currently shackled, according to a Human Rights Watch report released Monday. Chaining up the mentally ill has been illegal in Indonesia for nearly 40 years but remains rife across the country, especially in rural areas where health services are limited and belief in evil spirits prevail, according to HRW."I am a stupid man," he chanted, during a recent visit by AFP, as he squirmed around on the bench. Nearby, another shackled man urinated where he stood unable to reach two reeking, doorless bathrooms.At least 14 million people in Indonesia aged 15 and over are thought to be suffering from some form of mental illness, according to health ministry data.
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