File - In this March 12, 2010 photo, students walk near the statue of U.S. President Barack Obama as a boy at an elementary school he once attended in Jakarta, Indonesia. (AP Photo/Irwin Fedriansyah)
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The Indonesia that Barack Obama lived in as a child bore fresh scars from the darkest period in country's modern history.Now Indonesian human rights officials want Obama's help in addressing unanswered questions about the bloodshed 50 years ago. They are requesting the declassification of secret U.S. files that could shed light on how the killings were planned and the extent that the U.S. collaborated with Indonesia's military.Despite nearly two decades of civilian rule, the prevailing account in Indonesia of those events remains the one planted by the military regime that swept to power after the killings, led by the dictator Suharto who ruled for 30 years. Thomas Blanton, director of the nongovernment National Security Archive, said the Obama administration has quite a good track record on declassifying documents for human rights accountability, but he said the U.S. was unlikely to act without a strong push from the Indonesian government, particularly as some of the documents being sought are closely guarded CIA operational files.
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