Subject: East Timor Press Review 7June 2002

East Timor Press Review

7June 2002 

The Timor Post for the second day running published a front-page story on the East Timor Defense Force. ETDF Colonel Lere Anan Timor is quoted as saying “Our Constitution decrees that East Timor’s armed forces should be called FALINTIL/ETDF. No one should challenge this.” Colonel Lere reportedly went on to say, “I have heard too many stories about former FALINTIL members being encouraged by a few people to complain because they are not integrated in East Timor Defense Force.” The colonel called on the government to find out who is making these complaints, which he said stem from the CPD-RDTL and can create instability in East Timor.

The Timor Post reported former Falintil commander Eli Fo Rai Bot (L7) as saying that East Timor’s current problems are a culmination of problems between leaders dating back to 1975. He said all veteran commanders should sit together to decide on how FALINTIL should be transformed. Both Lere and Eli Fo Rai Bot were among the speakers at a conference held yesterday in Dili to examine relations between the military and civilians.

Members of the ETPS traffic control department say there has been an increase in traffic accidents lately due to careless and reckless driving. A policeman named Laurentino de Jesus is reportedly calling on the government to install traffic lights so that police can better control vehicle movement.

A Timor Post editorial says that the government must provide some kind of protection for workers and prioritize the development of various sectors in order to create employment.

The paper reports that East Timor’s first ambassador to Portugal, Pascoela Barreto, will assume his functions later this month. She has been living in Portugal since 1970. The front page of Suara Timor Loro Sae also gives prominent coverage to yesterday’s conference on military/civilian relations.

STL reported on a visit to Maubisse by Minister of Internal Administration Rogerio Lobato and his counterpart from Mozambique. “Many of us lived in Mozambique and were supported by these brothers and sisters,” Lobato reportedly told residents of the district, adding that, “Mozambique supported us financially in order for us to travel between New York, Brazil, and China to speak about our struggle.”

An article in STL reports that the people of East Timor do not want to suffer any more, and warns that guns are being distributed to civilians. The paper does not say who is distributing the weapons, but says those carrying out these activities should be incarcerated.

Minister for Transport Ovidio de Jesus Amaral confirms that a ferry service between Dili, Oecussi district and Atauro Island will begin service on 16 June.

CPD-RDTL coordinator Antonio Aitahan Matak says the government must study the conditions and situation of people occupying state properties. He said these properties should not simply be given over to those working in the government.

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