Subject: Daily Media Review 10 July 2003


Dili, July 10 2003 Daily Media Review

Aitahan Matak: CPD-RDTL In Favor of Proposed Immigration Law

In an interview with Timor Post on Tuesday, the coordinator of the CPD-RDTL group, Antonio Aitahan Matak, said he is in favor of the proposed bill on immigration and asylum approved by Parliament. He does not blame the Court of Appeal, President Gusmão or the National Parliament for the document but rather those who are hiding under the cover of the UN to suppress the rights of the Timorese people. Aitahan Matak added that according to regulation 1410, UNMISET is still mostly in charge of the country and countries like Portugal, Australia, and US are pushing their colonial interests by using the authority of UNMISET to monopolize the stability in Timor-Leste. He emphasized that he does not recognise the current constitution but respected the Parliament approval of the document. (STL)

MP Not Happy with President Gusmão Decision

Francisco Branco, Fretilin's Member of Parliament said on Wednesday that President Gusmão has not been consistent in his statements when appealing to politicians not to degrade each other publicly with destructive criticisms. Branco referred to the recent criticism of Parliament by Gusmão, adding that it would only create public controversy among politicians. At the press conference held by the President and broadcast through on national TV, Gusmão made criticised to the institution, and this had upset members of the Parliament who have also rejected that 'the RDTL Constitution has been copied from the Portuguese Constitution'. Branco added that such statement would have a bad impact on the Timorese. (STL)

More Timorese Women Involved in Porno Movie

According to investigations by the Prosecutor General's Office, there is evidence that around eight, not two, Timorese women are allegedly involved in the pornographic VCD. Monteiro said they will question these women to try to identify the person responsible for the movie. In a separate article the Executive Director of the Communication Forum of Timorese Women [FOKUPERS] is saddened and surprised with such action taken by the women. On Wednesday the media reported that the movie had been on sale in Dili for some time now with two Timorese women starring as actors. (STL)

New Paramilitary Force Is Creating Tension with F-FDTL

Lusa reports that the creation of a new quasi-paramilitary police force in Timor-Leste is causing some tension and uneasiness among the country's Armed Forces that continue to cope with the lack of adequate funding and resources. The issue is polarising views within F-FDTL which do not receive the necessary support from the international community. Donor countries are only interested in providing financial support to the national police force, PNTL. At stake is the Rapid Deployment Service, a structure created by the government "to prevent the occurrence of attacks" similar to the ones earlier in the year. Lusa quotes a military observer in Timor-Leste as saying that the stand of the international community [to support PNTL rather than F-FDTL) is an attempt to apply to Timor-Leste models from other post-conflict nations. "It is the fear of the children of the revolution," said the military observer. "Here, it's probably the least appropriate option. Here, the armed forces are more disciplined, more likely to put up with sacrifices [the lack of resources] and more likely to respect the hierarchy".

According to President Gusmão the decision is "confused" because in the case of the international forces [here], the responsibility for this kind of action is given to the UN peacekeeping force and not to the international police. " When we sent in the FDTL in January, there was a harsh reaction from the international community.

They all said F-FDTL should not deal with such situation. But in the international case this task falls to PKF. Why?" asked Gusmão. "The blame lies with those who take the view that to combat a militia incursion, we need a well-equipped peacekeeping force. But when this task falls to the Timorese, it should be the responsibility not of F-FDTL but of the police", said the President adding that he understands F-FDTL 's argument: " one does not learn guerrilla [tactics] with only 3 months' training, one does not learn it deploying the police to deal with the guerrillas, regardless of how well-equipped they may be". (Lusa)

Australian Government Stands by Timor-Leste Travel Advisory

The Australian Government is standing by its travel warning for people planning to visit Timor-Leste, after the Timorese Foreign Affairs Minister criticised the content of the alert. The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade advises Australians travelling to Timor-Leste to exercise extreme caution in light of possible terrorist threats. Timor-Leste's Foreign Affairs Minister José Ramos-Horta has disagreed with the warning and said his tempted to issue his own advice to Timorese residents not to travel to Australia. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Chris Gallus said the advice is sensible and won't be changed. "This has been the same travel advice that has been up for the last three months," she said. "And of course around the region at the moment we are very well aware that there are terrorist threats of various kinds from various groups around the region and that is why we have this regional warning which is to be cautious." (ABC)

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