Subject: AN: Indonesia welcomes Gusmao to Nusa Tenggara

Received from Joyo Indonesia News

Asia Pulse/Antara November 5, 2002

Indonesia welcomes East Timor's president to Nusa Tenggara

ATAMBUA, East Nusa Tenggara,

The Indonesian government is satisfied with the visit of East Timorese President Xanana to East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), as it falls within the framework of enhancing bilateral cooperation, and will help with the repatriation of East Timorese refugees.

The remark was made by the secretary of the People's Welfare Coordinating Ministry, Soetedjo Yuwono, in Atambua,on Monday, representing the central government when he was accompanying President Xanana during his visit to NTT from November 1 to 4.

"President Xanana's visit has been significant in that he has made known his policies on improving fraternity and cooperations in various fields of development with Indonesia," he said.

The Indonesian government also felt satisfied as President Xanana held frank talks with his countrymen who are still living in refugee camps in NTT, to encourage them to return to their home country.

Xanana's visit happened at the right time, as the process of repatriation of East Timorese refugees will expire on December 31, he said.

With the return of refugees, he said, East Timor would develop quicker, while the burden on the Indonesian government, especially NTT province, would fall.

On the deadline of refugees' repatriation on December 31, 2002, he said it would the final date that could not be extended.

"We should be consistent with the deadline in the handling of refugees' repatriation in cooperation with UNHCR and IOM," he said.

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