Month for Justice for East Timor
Dear friends of East Timor,
Since March 2002, the sham Indonesian ad hoc Human Rights Court on East
Timor -- the Indonesian government's attempt to avoid an international
tribunal on war crimes and crimes against humanity committed against the
people of East Timor -- has been hearing cases. Since August, the
Indonesian court has acquitted 11 of 13 Indonesian security officers, out
of a total of 18 defendants.
The Indonesian court's last verdicts are expected in mid-March -- just
a few weeks away. Visible grassroots action following the end of the
trials is essential to ensure a robust U.S. response condemning the
fatally-flawed Indonesian court and demanding an international
tribunal for East Timor! The Bush administration would like to ignore the
crimes of the Indonesian military, but we must not let them!
We urge you to take action during the MONTH for JUSTICE for EAST
TIMOR, from the end of the Indonesian trials in mid-March to the
conclusion of the annual UN Human Rights Commission meeting in Geneva on
There are a number of different actions you and others in your
community can take. Please read the suggestions below, decide what makes
sense for you to do in your community, and let me know about your plans.
I'll be happy to help with materials, input and other support.
We know the possible U.S. war on Iraq is adding to the many demands
already placed on activists' time. But any action you are able to take at
this critical time for justice for East Timor will make a real difference.
And explicitly linking justice for East Timor with U.S.-Indonesian
military ties and the "war on terror" will help recruit others.
A luta continua, Diane
What can you do during the MONTH for JUSTICE for EAST TIMOR?
- Contact the Media. Write letters to the editor in response to
news coverage of the Indonesian trials, current Indonesian military
crimes, the UN Human Rights Commission meeting (17 March to 24 April)
or other related news. Sample letters to the editor are on ETAN's
website at www.etan.org/action/letters/letters.htm.
- You could also write an op/ed piece or article for your local
papers, indymedia center or community radio/ TV. Contact
supportive local reporters to conduct interviews with you, other local
ETANers, ETAN staff or East Timorese friends currently in the U.S.
- Call and write your members of Congress to ask them to sign
on to the "Dear Colleague" letter calling for an
international tribunal for East Timor to be circulated by Rep Patrick
Kennedy -- and encourage others to do the same (letter to be
- Do outreach to local religious communities to encourage their
members to take action, and ask them to sign on to the religious
community letter calling for an international tribunal for East Timor,
covering atrocities committed from 1975 to 1999 (letter to be ready
soon!). If local religious bodies adopt formal resolutions, ask them
to pass one in support of an international tribunal for East Timor.
- Host a video showing or house meeting as part of a local
"JUSTICE for EAST TIMOR" action night. New videos focused on
justice will be available soon; follow the video showing with
discussion and time for letter writing to local papers and Members of
- Organize a demonstration at the Indonesian embassy,
Indonesian consulate or other public place. Ideas include performing a
mock trial street theater piece, chalking the names of victims on the
sidewalk, or handing out "wanted" flyers for Indonesian
military officers asking passers by to take action for justice for
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