Subject: Marzuki to force ex-officials to testify on Timor violence

Indonesian Observer May 17, 2000

AGO to force ex-officials to testify on Timor melee

JAKARTA (IO) Attorney General Marzuki Darusman said yesterday in Jakarta, that it is possible that he will force former East Timor governor Jose Abilio Osorio Soares and former regents in the region, to testify in the case of last year’s human rights violations.

For the last two weeks, a joint investigative team for human rights violations in East Timor has been gathering data related to post ballot-violence after the territory voted for independence on August 30, 1998.

Indonesia was condemned by others countries for failing to prevent violence by pro-Jakarta militias after the ballot.

The Attorney General’s Office has sent letters to five officials namely Jose Abilio Osorio Soares, the former Governor, Dominggos Soares, former Dili Regent, Suprapto Tarman, former Aileu Regent, Guilermo dos Santos, former Bobonaro Regent and Edmundo da Silva, former Lautem Regent, urging them come to the office However,no one came.

"Legal efforts will be taken in order to urge them all to come to the office to testify. If they do not come here after the third warning letters, they may be legally sanctioned. They have to give their accountability reports in connection with the alleged violations," he said.

He said he could accept their reasons for being unable to appear at the office. "Nevertheless, it is their obligation to come here, otherwise they will be legally sanctioned."

Today, the teams are still gathering information in connection with the alleged atrocities in East Timor even though the region is now an independent nation.

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