Subject: RDP: Horta condemns denial of UN access
Date: Wed, 09 Dec 1998 12:23:06 -0500
From: "John M. Miller" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
December 9, 1998
Timor resistance condemns government over blocking UN envoy's visit RDP Antena 8 Dec 98
[Presenter] The Timorese resistance advocates an immediate end to the talks, under UN auspices, between Portugal and Indonesia on the future of East Timor because Jakarta allegedly has not allowed a UN special envoy to visit the area of Alas. Tamrat Samuel arrived in Timor on Sunday to ascertain the truth concerning the massacres - according to the church 42 civilians are missing. Jose Ramos Horta compares Jakarta's attitude with similar ones in Congo and Iraq.
[Horta] This is serious. It reveals bad faith, bad will and an interest in challenging the UN itself. At the moment Indonesia is trying to discredit the UN. It is in confrontation with the UN by preventing a UN representative from travelling to Alas. There are only a few other cases of the UN being denied access to certain areas of a country: Kabila in Zaire, the military junta in Burma and Saddam Hussein. At a time when Portugal and Indonesia are negotiating, at the UN, the opening of interest sessions, one of the conditions for the Portuguese interest session is to have easy access to Timor. Well, if Indonesia is currently denying the UN access to Alas, can you imagine the difficulties Portuguese diplomats in Jakarta will have. This makes us fear that something far more serious is going on in Alas. If the UN is being challenged, if a delegation including the governor, Abilio Osorio Soares, has been denied access, it is because something very serious has happened. [End of recording]
The Portuguese government has played down this matter. Quoted by Lusa , a spokesman for Portuguese Foreign Minister Jaime Gama has said that Portugal has confidence in the UN and recalls that two Red Cross missions have been to Alas and did not obtain conclusive results. The UN has not commented on this matter.