Subject: Habibie in the Footsteps of Suharto
Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 19:28:09 +0100
From: "Gab. Dr. Ramos Horta" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
C.N.R.T. - National Council of the Timorese Resistance
Habibie in the footsteps of Suharto
Lisbon, 12 June 1998 - About 1500 East Timorese students spent 8 hours peacefully demonstrating today in front of the Indonesian Foreign Ministry in Jakarta, demanding the release of Xanana Gusmão and of all the East Timorese political prisoners, demanding that a referendum on self-determination be held in East Timor. In the absence of Foreign Minister Ali Alatas, a delegation was able to present Hadi Warabi, Director of the Asia and Pacific Division of the Ministry, with a 30 page manifesto detailing their demands.
International news agencies report that the demonstration was then brutally repressed by a contingent composed of policemen, members of special forces KOSTRAD and of the military police. The demonstrators were forced to leave the premises in buses. Their whereabouts remained unknown during several hours.
The National Council of the Timorese Resistance (CNRT) is outraged by such an excessive demonstration of force. It reveals the nature of the new Indonesian government. The dictator Suharto might have fallen, the regime remains the same.
In this light, the CNRT calls on weapon exporting countries to stop all deliveries to Indonesia, all military training of and joint military exercises with Indonesian troops, all intelligence and military cooperation with the Indonesian army.
The Indonesian army is part and parcel of the 32 years of Suharto rule, the instrument of coercion, repression and death in East Timor and in some parts of Indonesia such as West Papua and Aceh. Political reform in Indonesia must include a thorough reform of the army itself.
The East Timorese Resistance will continue to show restraint, moderation and flexibility to allow Indonesia to disengage from East Timor with honor and dignity.
Indonesia is now totally bankrupt and in no position to continue to act with the same defiance of international law and impunity towards East Timor. Indonesia can no longer afford the costs of its occupation of East Timor and should show some flexibility, tolerance and pragmatism. The international community should not continue to bankroll the Indonesian army. The Indonesian people should be made aware of the reality of Indonesia's occupation of East Timor.
The CNRT joins voices with the courageous East Timorese students who demonstrated today in Jakarta and reiterates its demands for: the immediate recognition of the East Timorese People's right to self-determination; the immediate and unconditional liberation of Xanana Gusmão and of all East Timorese political prisoners; the full participation of the CNRT, led by President Xanana Gusmão, in the negotiations process under UN auspices; the reduction of the Indonesian military presence in East Timor; the preparation through negotiations of a referendum on self-determination.
Contact: Roque Rodrigues FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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