Subject: AN: 5 Options for E Timorese in W Timor


September 2, 2003 10:11pm Antara

Kupang, September 2 (ANTARA) - The Indonesian government has reiterated the five options offered to former residents of East Timor who have continued to stay in Indonesia's West Timor area despite East Timor's declaration as the Republic of Timor Leste.

The five options apply to those who have neither decided to return home to the Republic of Timor Leste nor joined the Indonesian government's resettlement program at their own free will.

According to Djidon de Haan, Head of East Nusatenggara's Manpower and Transmigration Office, the five options, if consistently followed, are expected to comprehensively solve the entailing problem of East Timor's separation from the Republic of Indonesia.

The five options are returning to what is now the Republic of Timor Leste voluntarily, residing in Indonesia, joining a resettlement program outside the West Timor area, resettling in West Timor area and adopting those who serve as members of the Indonesian Military (TNI) and Police Forces.

Speaking to the press here Tuesday, Djidon de Haan said that the East Nusatenggara Provincial Administration had tried to recollect data about East Timorese people living in refugee camps in West Nusatenggara area.

The East Timor refugee census will be carried out in the Regency of Kupang, Regency of Timor Tengah Selatan (TTS) and Regency of Timor Tengah Utara (TTU) up to September 15 this year.

The census for those staying in the Regency of Belu, where most of East Timor refugees stay, will last until September 18.

The refugee census will be jointly conducted by the Indonesian government, the International Organization of Migrants and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Djidon de Haan said.

According to Djidon de Haan, the UNHCR and the IOM will help facilitate those interested in returning to Timor Leste voluntarily.

"We just hope that the refugee census will be completed by September 18", Djidon de Haan said.

Necessary analysis will be conducted on the East Timorese refugees, Djidon de Haan said, adding that the results of such a checking will be used as a strong basis for the following steps taken to solve the East Timor problem once and for all.

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