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Subject: Pub: Portugal welcomes US call for "more transparency"
Date: Mon, 14 Dec 1998 12:40:30 -0500
From: "John M. Miller" <>

Portugal welcomes US call for "more transparency" in East Timor 10 December 98


The presence of UN observers in East Timor and the opening up of the territory to observation missions are now closer to becoming a reality. This is what the Portuguese government believes, not hiding the satisfaction caused by the letter US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright sent Portuguese Foreign Minister Jaime Gama.

In the letter, revealed two days ago, what was most significant for the Foreign Ministry, in addition to the support for a troop reduction and the release of Xanana Gusmao, was the USA's wish to see the situation in the territory become "more transparent" . "We also agree that it should be in the interest of the Indonesian government to make the situation in the territory more transparent," the secretary of state wrote, expressing confidence in the efforts of UN diplomat Tamrat Samuel, who has visited the territory.

With US backing, Portugal sees its proposal for permanent UN officials in East Timor and for EU missions and others, strengthened. This is aimed at ensuring, concretely, that what happens in East Timor is known so that there is no contradictory information, such as in the recent massacre in Alas.

Although Madeleine Albright praised Indonesia's "flexible position" in the negotiations, under UN auspices, the US position was clear with regard to the need for greater concessions from the Indonesian authorities...

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