Subject: AN: Indon House of Reps probes Timor assets & deportations


December 9, 2004 11:07pm Antara

Jakarta, Dec 9 (ANTARA) - The House of Representatives (DPR) has urged the government to complete the process of arriving at an extradition treaty with Singapore and to settle borderline issues with neighboring countries soon.

In a hearing between Foreign Minister Hasan Wirajuda and the House's Commission I dealing with defence, foreign and information matters here on Thursday, a number of legislators also questioned the awkward and slow process of concluding an extradition treaty with Singapore.

In response, Wirajuda said the slow progress in talks on an extradition treaty with Singapore was not due to anything on Indonesia's part but the city state's tendency to procrastinate.

About the recent deportation of hundreds of Indonesian nationals from East Timor, the House urged the minister to settle the issue with relevant agencies soon and to step up its diplomacy with the East Timorese government.

The government should also give Indonesians living in East Timor legal protection, the commission said.

In relation with the question of Indonesians still living and Indonesian assets that had been left behind in East Timor, the commission said the foreign ministry needed to keep on making efforts to settle the two problems and arrange for their return to Indonesia maximally.

The commission was also of the view that the delay in the settlement of certain issues, including borderline problems, with other countries was related to diplomatic shortcomings on Indonesia's part, lack of supporting facilities and budgetary constraints.

The House asked the foreign ministry to speed up the settlement of a number of issues with other countries, including those involving border lines, by stepping up its diplomatic efforts.

About the possibility of the Papua issue becoming internationalized, the House urged the foreign ministry to do its best to prove it. The government had to have the ability to ensure that Papua remained an integral part of Indonesia.

On the other hand, the foreign ministry should strive to improve Indonesia's image in the world in cooperation with many parties including non governmental organizations.

On the political situation in Myanmar, the House urged the government to make approaches to that country's government to resolve its problems in a proper way and with an attitude consistent with democracy.


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