Subject: Tempo: Rights Trial May Be Held on Indonesia-East Timor Border

Human Rights Trial May Be Held on Indonesia-East Timor Border 14 Sep 2002 21:28:58 WIB

TEMPO Interactive, Jakarta :Indonesian Attorney General MA Rachman and Minister of Justice and Human Rights Yusril Ihza Mahendra are currently looking at the possibility of holding an East Timor human rights trial in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara.

This city has been chosen because it is on (sic) the border between Indonesia and East Timor.

The Attorney General’s Office (AGO) spokesperson Barman Zahir made this statement to journalists at his office in Jakarta on Friday (13/9).

According to Zahir, the holding of the trial in Kupang will make it easier for prosecutors and defense lawyers to call witnesses from East Timor in regards to human rights violations following the East Timor referendum in 1999.

As reported earlier, several witnesses from East Timor, including Dili Bishop Belo, have refused to give evidence in the East Timor trial in Jakarta.

According to them, there is no security guarantee for them and the trial is considered to be unfair.

Rachman had previously considered it would be impossible to hold a trial on or near the border.

However, according to Zahir, this matter is now being discussed by Rachman and Mahendra.

If agreement is reached, then the idea will be proposed to President Megawati Soekarnoputri.(Bagja Hidayat—Tempo News Room)

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