Subject: Timor-Leste Local Media Monitoring 22 January

Timor-Leste Local Media Monitoring 22 January 2003

Timor Post: Taur Criticizes Human Rights Organization

Falintil/FDTL Commander, Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak criticized on Tuesday a human rights organisation and international institution operating in Timor-Leste, which accused Falintil/FDTL of "breaking human rights procedures" when detained members of Colimau 2000 Group. Speaking to the media at Falintil/FDTL headquarters Taur said " I extend an invitation, to those that defend human rights to travel together with Falintil/FDTL to Hatulia, Atsabe to have a face to face dialogue with the local people. If they are only in Dili travelling up and down in their cars, critics can be made but please go and see the people who are suffering, who are not sleeping in their homes and who have not been going to work in their corn fields. When they are impartial, they only look at one side, not the victims. To be precise they are siding with those criminals". Ruak added that Falintil/FDTL was created 20 years ago to defend victims of power abuses, criminals and those in power. "Therefore I think no one cannot point a finger to FDTL for not defending human rights. All the Timorese defended human rights but clearly at that moment [during Indonesian occupation of Timor-Leste] many people forgot about human rights" he said. He pointed that many foreigners currently in Timor-Leste are speaking about human rights and should not preach the Timorese because many countries sided with Indonesia to violate the rights of Timorese people. " Now these are the people speaking about human rights. How do we classify human rights? To defend those criminals or defend those who have detained them and defend those who have died? Those people, defenders of human rights up to date have not made an effort to do an investigation on the victims in Atsabe. I would like to stress that they defend more the criminals the same way as we with the victims" stated Ruak. The Timorese Brigadier General informed that he had discussed with Mr. Hasegawa as member of the UN and invited him and his staff to speak to the people in that area to judge whether the actions of the former militias were correct. In regards to those detainees released by the court, Taur said Falintil/FDTL would carry on with their investigation and take the case back to the tribunal.

Suara Timor Lorosa'e: Taur: Victims Have Not Been Ignored According to "Suara Timor Lorosae" Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak criticized UNPOL Police commissioner Peter Miller; in a letter sent to Taur, Miller-states the newspaper- accused Falintil/FDTL of violating human rights when they detained people involved in the Atsabe attack. Speaking to the media Ruak said that the accusations "are a cover up to their weakness." " It is better for the UNPOL Commissioner Peter Miller to speak the truth that the police does not have the capacity, instead of trying to cover it up by accusing Falintil/FDTL breaking human rights," he said. (STL)

Suara Timor Lorosa'e: Aitahan Matan Meets PM Alkatiri CPD-RDTL coordinator, Antonio Aitahan Matak, on Tuesday met PM Alkatiri and handed him a document underlining the main topics for the upcoming national dialogue scheduled for 25th of this month. Aitahan Matak said he requested a reply from the government as well as the Parliament and the President on the acceptance of the proposal. He said " The people gave me the document to hand it in. This is the second time that I am doing this. I have not yet received a reply. But hopefully the government will come with something good for the people". Aitahan Matak added that during his meeting with the Prime Minister they discussed the possibility of some people using the national dialogue opportunity to create problems. He alerted PKF, UNPOL and the Timorese Police to take into consideration the situation of Falintil, which is now divided into two groups: one guarding the weapons in Metinaro, which became FDTL during UNTAET period, and the other living among the communities and under the responsibility of CPD-RDTL. These are the reasons I have requested PKF, UNPOL and the Timorese Police to respect them. From their uniform to backpacks to radio communications they have acquired during the resistance period the area of Baucau. This is why CPD-RDTL demands security to be transfered to the Timorese.

Suara Timor Lorosa'e: 819 East Timorese Children Are Still In Indonesia Manuel Carceres da Costa from UNHCR stated that many Timorese children are still living in Indonesia. Interviewed by STL he said TNI troops forced over 4000 East Timorese children to separate from their parents during 1999 violence. According to him 2,131 children have been identified by UNHCR and they will soon return to Timor-Leste. He also said that the whereabouts of 1370 is not clear. He said many were already adults and had married. A few were being getting the support of their parents He added that he was also informed about the death of two of these children. At the moment 819 East Timorese children are still in Indonesia and UNHCR is still trying to return them to their parent.

END


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