Subject: East Timor Press Review 29 October 2002

East Timor Press Review 29 October 2002

· Timor Post reported on the official opening of President Gusmão’s office yesterday in Caicoli, Dili. Speaking to journalist President Xanana Gusmão stated that it is important to create the basic conditions to work rather than having a nice office. The presidential office is called “ Palacio das Cinzas/The Ashes Palace” which is across from the UN hospital. In the same article Mr. Gusmão stressed that he is happy to use his new office because it is spacious and he can breathe easily now. The President said he requested this building to former Head of UN, Sergio Vieira de Mello and Prime Minister, Mari Alkatiri soon after being elected as President of Timor-Leste.

· Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, José Ramos-Horta told journalist that he fully supports the President’s idea in setting up the office in that building. Mr. Horta said the building is not a new one and the President was briefed about the condition of it and decided to carry on his work there during its reconstruction.

· At the opening ceremony of the President’s office yesterday, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation also told journalists that the use of building and land by Continental University in Marconi, Fatu-Hada, is illegal because the premises have been assigned to the Department of Foreign Affairs.

· President Xanana Gusmão congratulated Brazil’s new President, Luís Inácio Lula da Silva who won the presidential election by 61 per cent of the vote, reported Timor Post.

· Parliament Member, Leandro Isac (PSD party) stated to journalists that the decision of the President to work in the new Palace is good because many people in the communities are still leaving in the same condition. But on the other hand he said it is not good because the whole government’s cabinet members are living in nice and luxury residences.

· Timor Post reported that Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports, Armindo Maia announced that a survey was conducted on Timorese students in Portugal in order to find out how many of them are still continuing their studies.

· The Executive Director of East Timor Study Group (ETSG), João Mariano Saldanha, Phd stated that the government must appoint a Minister to deal with veteran’s issues.

· It is reported that Members of Parliament will go on 2 months annual leave starting from 15 November to 15 February. Only the permanent commissions composed of 37 members will be on standby to deal with issues of urgent requirements.

· Timor Post reported that the court case of a youth male killed by a car was postponed today because the judges, prosecutors and public defender had to attend a training workshop in Dili.

· Head of Dili District Court, Aderito Tilman said, “the judicial system in Timor-Leste is not confused. The government itself is confused because they do not have clear definition on the judicial process.”

· New Zealand’s Government donated US$ 235.000 dollar for the development of the agriculture and environment protection awareness. New Zealand Government representative in Timor-Leste, Susannah Gordon and Vice-Minister of Finance, Aisha Basarewan, signed the agreement last Friday.

· Suara Timor Lorosae’s front page reported a member of the Commission of Reception Truth and Reconciliation (CRTR), Jacinto Alves as saying that the commission already started its function in all 13 districts and sub-districts to facilitate the reconciliation process in communities. Mr. Alves spoke during a press conference held yesterday at CRTR’s office in Balide.

· STL also reported on Members of Parliament 2 months annual leave.

· Military Commander of Wira Sakti in Kupang, West Timor, Colonel Moesanip stated that he will guarantee the security of Timor-Leste’s President during his upcoming visit to Atambua and Kupang.

· STL reported on the official inauguration of President Xanana Gusmão’s new office in Caicoli. Mr. Gusmão said there are no funding from the government to build a new office because Members of Parliament did not approve any budget for it.

· Minister of Education, Armindo Maia said that the survey done on Timorese students studying with scholarship in Portugal indicates that 17 students decided to return to Timor-Leste because their parents cannot afford to sent them money.

· Rui Martins, the Head of Post Office said the Government of Timor-Leste and Indonesia plan to establish postal and telecommunications cooperation next year.

· It is reported that an ANZ Bank security officer was attacked on Sunday night by a group of 7 people. Americo dos Santos had to receive treatment in the national hospital.

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