Subject: East Timor Press Review 20 September, 2002

East Timor Press Review 20 September, 2002

· Timor Post and Suara Timor Lorosae both carried a front-page photo of President Gusmão being welcomed by a Maori elder through the traditional way upon his arrival in New Zealand.

· TP reported on an interview with the Minister of Internal Administration, Rogerio Lobato who stressed that he had presented the government’s concern to the Australian embassy. The Minister said Australia must coordinate with the government and UN before putting containers in various areas because it is a sovereign country’s land. Mr. Lobato said that during his meeting with PKF FC Major General Tan Huck Gim apart from security he also raised the problem of illegal entry of people in East Timor. The Internal Affairs Minister said some of these come with other intentions.

· TP reported that National Parliament Commission C, met with World Bank representatives to discuss various important issues including the control of rise in prices as well as investment interest rates from banks.

· Vice Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing, Francisco da Silva Benevides has been quoted as saying that the government cannot establish the price on coffee in Timor Leste because the standard prices on the International markets has not been yet adjusted reported Timor Post.

· STL reported that in the last 3-years of operating in East Timor, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has facilitated the return of around 200,000 Timorese refuges from West Timor.

· MP Maria Paixao (PSD) observed that 20 of September has been acknowledged by the Timorese people as the liberation day. Ms. Paixão reminded that this was the day that International Force For East Timor (INTERFET) arrived in the country.

· The Head of UN Resident Coordination Unit, Mehmet Yilmaz announced that the United Nation Development Award 2002 is aimed at recognising a Timorese national who has been successful involved in the advancement of sustainable human development, alleviation of poverty and institutional capacity building in East Timor.

· STL reported that a press statement released by CPD-RDTL/Fretilin Movimento said members of the group did not participate in the public hearing of National Parliament Commission “A” on nationality because the invitation was sent to individuals and not to CPD-RDTL as an organisation. Vicente Faria pointed out that UNMISET representatives, present at the debate, felt that the proposed bill is useful however it did not provide better suggestion on how the bill can be further improved.

· Director of the Department of Land and Transport, Basilio M.X. Texeira stated that currently there are around 1200 taxis and 300 minibuses. Mr. Texeira explained that soon his department would send out letters to public transport owners to limit the transport in Dili and focus in operating in the districts.

· STL reported that Diarrhea has become an epidemic in Oeccussi District.

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