Subject: Statement by Free ET Japan Coalition: Jakarta Tribunal

Below is a statement issued by Free East Timor! Japan Coalition on 19 August, distributed and submitted to Japanese media, diet members, PM, etc. Rough translation by me, a non-native English speaker, so detailed nuances and claims may be diffelent a bit.

Regards, Kyo Kageura ---- We strongly criticise the Indonesian "Ad Hoc Human Rights Court on East Timor" and call for the establishment of an international tribunal on for East Timor

August 19, 2002

Indonesian Court does not bring justice, covers up the truth.

On August 14, 2002, the "Indonesian Ad Hoc Human Rights Court on East Timor" sentenced three years imprisonment to former governor of East Timor (under illegal Indonesian occupation), for not preventing his men from committing violence. The next day, on August 15, the "Court" aquitted former "East Timor" police head Timbul Silaen, as well as former Covalima military commander Col. Liliek Koeshadianto, former Suai military district commander Maj. Sugito, former Covalima regent Col. Herman Sedyono, former Suai district military chief of staff Maj. Achmad Syamsuddin and former Suai police precinct chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Gatot Subiantoro.

At this occasion, where these truly appalling decisions once again undeniably showed frauds of the proceedings of the "Indonesian Ad Hoc Human Rights Court", we, Free East Timor Japan Coalition, want to express our opinion and standpoint concerning the clarification of responsibilities and the realisation of justice in relation to numerous and serious human right violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed not only before and after the ballot in 1999 but also under 24 years of illegal Indonesian occupation since 1975.

We recognise some essential as well as procedural frauds in the Indonesian "Ad Hoc Court" and trials:

a. "East Timor problem" is, first and foremost, an international problem caused by Indonesian invasion and illegal occupation of East Timor. In addition, as is pointed out by the report issued by UN investigation team in January 2000, crimes committed before and after the ballot in 1999 have international dimension, because they were committed against the agreement under UN that put Indonesian authority in charge of security. Letting Indonesia treat the problem domestically results in erasing this international dimension of the problem.

b. The jurisdiction of the "Indonesian Ad Hoc Human Rights Court on East Timor" is arbitrarily and very much limited. It only deals with incidents that happend only in April and September, 1999, in three (Dili, Liquica, Covalima) out of 13 districts in East Timor. By this restriction, many large atrocities and massacres such as the massacre at Maliana police station on September 8, 1999, are excluded from examination. In addition, this ambiguates and makes impossible the clarification of the contexts in which individual crimes are committed, which is essential for the discussion of crimes against humanity; the jurisdiction of the "Court" itself contradicts its stated aim of dealing with crimes against humanity.

c. The range of accused is also very limited. In the report of the Indonesian investigation team (KPP-HAM), for instance, listed more than 30 suspects, including then Indonesian Military Commander General Wiranto and Maj. Gen. Zacky Anwar. However, these top-level officials were excluded from the final list, which includes only 18 suspects.

d. In relation to b. and c. above, the accusations raised by the prosecutors do not clarify the widespread and systematic nature of violence, assume that the violence was sporadical, and define the crime of the accused as "not preventing" the violence. So the prosecutors demanded 10 and half year for Abilio Soares, a near minimal for crimes against humanity. Taking into account the widespread and systematic nature of the violence committed in 1999, as clearly stated by the reports by UN and KPP-HAM, it is clear that the prosecutors' demands contribute to blocking the clarification of the truth.

e. Many key witnesses refused to give evidence at the "Court", as there were no effective measures for their security. Many Military-related personell hear the court proceedings, and in some cases militia members demonstrated outside the court. Proper conditions for obtaining relevant evidence from key witnesses were not established.

f. Even at the stage of preparing for the establishment of the "Court", irregularities were reported with respect to the selection process of judges and prosecutors.

Given these reasons, instead of realising justice, we think that the "Indonesian Ad Hoc Human Rights Court on East Timor" covers up the truth. We believe that the recent decisions made by the "Court" was inevitable results of this shaw trial, which is a travesty of justice.

Recalling that the "East Timor problem" is an international problem caused by Indonesian invation and illegal occupation of the territory, considering that the violence in 1999 was committed against the agreement made by Indonesia with UN, and taking into account that the "Indonesian Ad Hoc Human Rights Court" covers up the truth and will never realise justice, we state here that, in order to bring justice to the rights violations, crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in East Timor, we believe that the matter should be dealt with in the international framework. Considering the fact that "international society" neglected the illegal occupation of East Timor by Indonesia for 24 years, this should be among the top priorities of the international society.

Pursuing the responsibility of the crimes internationally, through the revealing of truth, not only contributes to the future of East Timor, but also contribute to preventing the still-continuing gross human rights violations in Indonesia, by putting the period to the crimate of impunity so prevalent in Indonesia.

We hereby call upon the establishment of an international tribunal for East Timor.

Free East Timor Japan Coalition (consisting of 13 groups)

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