Subject: AFP: Timor militia leader accuses Indon government of disloyalty

Also: BP: Blamed by Eurico, Habibie accuses the UN

AFP: Timor militia leader accuses Indon government of disloyalty

Timor militia leader accuses Indonesian government of disloyalty JAKARTA, Oct 9 (AFP) - In a meeting marked by blood and tears, detained East Timorese militia leader Eurico Guterres wept Monday as he accused the Indonesian government of failing to appreciate his efforts to keep East Timor within Indonesia, police said.

An unshaven and bleary-eyed Guterres was brought out of his police cell to meet 30 of his supporters who had travelled from West Timor to demand his release, local television showed.

The usually confident leader of the feared 'Thorn' militia wept with his men, who in turn pricked their fingers and sprinkled drops of blood over a white cloth which they handed to Eurico as a pledge of loyalty, national police spokesman Senior Superintendent Saleh Saaf said.

"Eurico cried because one of his supporters presented him with a red and white (national Indonesian) flag as a sign of solidarity," Saaf, who was present at the meeting, told AFP.

"He was very moved and wept and said he didn't want them to give him a flag because he has fought so long to defend the red and white flag, to keep it flying in East Timor," Saaf said.

The Satunet online news service quoted Guterres as saying he was not crying because he was under arrest.

"I'm crying because right up to this moment, the government has not acknowledged our struggle. The Indonesian nation is large but it would seem its courage is small," Guterres said.

Guterres was arrested Wednesday on charges of ordering his men to take back weapons they had earlier surrendered during a handover ceremony in West Timor presided over by Vice President Megawati Sukarnoputri Monday.

The charge is unconnected to his implication in last year's human rights crimes in East Timor.

After Monday's meeting with his supporters, Guterres was quizzed for a second time by state prosecutors from the Attorney General's office who are probing the East Timor atrocities, Attorney General spokesman Yushar Yahya told AFP.

Police spokesman Saaf said Guterres, before leaving his supporters, entreated them "to be calm, not to make enemies with the police, not to riot, and not to fight."

Guterres, 27, known to have close ties with the Indonesian armed forces who raised and trained the militia in East Timor, was the chief of the feared and formerly Dili-based Aitarak (Thorn) militia group.

Prosecutors said Guterres had been involved in an attack on the refugee-packed house of East Timorese independence leader Manuel Carrascalao in April 1999, four months before the territory's autonomy vote.

Twelve people, Carrascalao' son, were killed in the attack.

The East Timorese voted for independence on August 30, 1999, sparking a week of killings, terror and destruction by the military-backed militias, who like Jakarta, claim the UN-sponsored balloting was marred by fraud.


Bali Post 4 October 2000

"Blamed by Eurico, Habibie accuses the UN"

 JAKARTA ­ [News similar to above with these additions:] Vice PPI Commander Eurico Guterres has accused former Pres. BJ Habibie as the one most responsible for the razing of E. Timor after the referendum there. Meanwhile Habibie, via his spokesperson Marwah Daud Ibrahim, rejected Guterres' accusation and asked that not just Habibie had to be responsible, but also the international community, especially the UN.

Besides Habibie, Eurico also wanted to say concerning responsibility that the burden should also be carried by TNI Gen. Wiranto. "Me, it depends on how far the General Attorney will go with enforcement and supremacy of the law," he stressed. When asked about the attack on Manuel Carascalao's home, Eurico said that it happened while he was leading role call for those on alert. At that time he was informed that Carascalao's house and car were burned and he went to the house and saw that it had been destroyed. He's surprised and wonders why 20 suspects that were caught for the incident were released. "Now I must be responsible, but what about those 20 suspects?" He explained that on 26 August 1999 when the pro-autonomy group carried out its campaign, there were those threatened with murder. Furthermore, the burning of two of his friends was witnessed by Unamet personnel and Joko Sugianto as head of the voting commission.

"Wasn't that an abuse of human rights?" he asked. Eurico greatly respects the legal process, but says the process should be carried out honestly and transparently without pressure from outside groups, what more pressure from foreign countries. This has also occurred with the possibility of his arrest so that it doesn't resolve the problem but is only to satisfy the foreign side.

The same thing was expressed by Habibie's spokesperson who is also Communication Director of The Habibie Center, Marwah Daud Ibrahim.

According to him, there has been international pressure since the beginning of the E. Timor problem. Not only the UN, but also certain countries, like Australia, gave the impression they were forcing their desires on Indo. Therefore, Pres. Habibie made the decision at that time to have a referendum for the people of E. Timor and this can't be separated from international influence. As the investigation process of those thought to be involved in the E. Timor case, said Marwah Daud, it increasingly gives evidence that Indonesia was trapped by a foreign scenario. Actually, said Marwah Daud, the government now should be brave to talk about the root of the E. Timor problem from the beginning. Furthermore, if need be, the Indo. govt. should also demand to the international community to process hr abuses that happened when E. Timor was integrated with Indonesia, especially those fighters involved in the Seroja Operation. He rejected the accusation that only Habibie is responsible for the E. Timor case saying that Suharto to Gus Dur's governments should also take responsibility. Therefore, he asked that the solving of the E. Timor case not be viewed personally.

Meanwhile in a demonstration at the House of Reps. building in Jakarta on Tuesday, about 100 E. Timor refugees joined in UAP (Refugee Asset Matters) pressured the government to attend to their situation of constant suffering. They demanded that the government immediately pay reparations for assets lost in the amount of 1,069 quintillion rupiah. UAP Head, IM Ndoen, said they were victims of central government policy. The option given by Habibie when he was President was a political decision of the government which undoubtedly had calculated every risk. "Therefore, all assets we left in E. Timor must be acknowledged with conscience by the central government properly and as quickly as possible," emphasized Ndoen. He said 5, 466 E. Timor refugees in NTT had listed their assets totaling 1.069.572.933.070 rupiah. "We will work together with the NTT provincial government to carry out a follow-up listing for refugees in NTT who have not yet listed their assets and will give it to the Speaker of the House of Reps. to struggle for this as should be done," said Ndoen.

Separately TNI commander Marsda Graito Usodo said it was rather difficult to confiscate militia weapons. In short, in the past they were part of the Indonesian people who struggled to enforce Red White in E. Timor. Nevertheless, he said, with conditions in Indonesia experiencing exceptional pressure from the international community at this time, it is hoped the militia will join in helping to resolve the E. Timor case, mainly by surrendering their weapons to security forces.

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