Subject: UNMISET Daily Media Review 20 December 2004


Daily Press Review

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review Monday, 20 December 2004

Timor’s Cabinet Approves New Petroleum Law

Timor-Leste’s cabinet has passed a landmark petroleum law opening the door to foreign companies seeking oil and gas exploration licences and will create millions of dollars in revenue for the impoverished nation. A statement released by Timor’s Cabinet said the legislation will allow international energy firms to begin exploring the tiny Southeast Asian nation’s on and offshore oil and gas reserves. Timor-Leste’s Secretary of State, Gregorio de Sousa, said the legal framework, which will be endorsed by Parliament in the next few weeks, would create a transparent, competitive and stable model for the development of the nation’s resources. Timor-Leste, one of Asia’s poorest nations, is looking to the energy sector as its major source of income with potentially billions of dollars of revenue available. (AFP, Lusa)

Serious Crimes Unit Issues 4 Indictments

The Serious Crimes Unit filed its final four indictments, charging 14 individuals with Crimes Against Humanity. The four indictments resulted from the recent completion of investigations in the districts of Ermera, Ainaro and Manufahi and include TNI and former militia commanders, all of whom are believed to be currently residing outside Timor-Leste. (SCU)

Horta and Wirayudha to present ‘Commission’ to UN chief

The Foreign Ministers of Timor-Leste and Indonesia, Jose Ramos Horta and Hassan Wirayudha, are scheduled to present the ‘Truth and Friendship Commission’ to United Nation Secretary General, Kofi Annan, tomorrow, reported STL. According to the report, Minister Ramos-Horta left for Jakarta on 19 December in order to travel to New York with his Indonesian counterpart Minister Wirayudha. It was reported last week that Timor-Leste and Indonesia reached an agreement to establish the ‘Truth and Friendship Commission’, which is aimed at reconsidering the killings of Timorese in 1999. The announcement was made following a meeting between President Gusmão and President Susilo Bambang Yudohyono, in Bali last Tuesday. (STL)

Martins: F-FDTL and PNTL Incident is Under Investigation

PNTL Commissioner, Paulo Martins, told media that the dispute between PNTL and F-FDTL officers on December 16 is currently under investigation. Mr Martins that police have investigated two persons in relation to the recent fighting. The result of the investigation, Martins added, would be announced to the public soon.

Meanwhile, Vice President of National Parliament’s Commission B in charge of Security Affairs, Clementino dos Reis do Amaral, stated that the investigation should take into account the level of involvement of the persons engaged in the fighting. If they were involved only once in such incidents, he said, they should be heavily punished but if it was twice or a third time, they should be completely dismissed from the military and police services. “There are still many people wanting to become members of F-FDTL and PNTL,” argued Do Amaral.

In other news, Prime Minister Alkatiri said FDTL and PNTL need to be adequately equipped following the withdrawal of the UN next year to ensure stability and security in Timor-Leste. Dr Alkatiri said apart from the capacity building training that is given to PNTL and F-FDTL, there are still many shortfalls in the areas of investigation, immigration, maritime as well as intelligence. He also added that PNTL and F-FDTL need to be trained in a variety of areas. (STL, Timor Post)

Lere Anan Timor: Police Should Avoid to Hit People

Chief of Staff of Falintil-FDTL, Colonel Lere Anan Timor, told the media last week that police should not hit people when they are apprehending them. He urged them to learn more about the existing regulations and human rights so that they could act in accordance with norms and become more professional. In addition, Anan Timor said the police should get more training as provided through the assistance of Timor-Leste’s development partners.

Commenting on the recent fighting between PNTL and F-FDTL members, Anan Timor said that the leadership of the two institutions should take strong measures against those who were involved in the incidents. (Timor Post)

Council of Ministers Approves Proposed Bill on Superior Council of Defence and Security

The Council of Ministers last Thursday approved the proposed bill on Superior Council of Defence and Security, presented by Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri. The bill defines the attribution and competence as well as the structure and the function of the Consultative Body for the President of the Republic. It would be soon submitted to the National Parliament for consideration. (Timor Post)

70 Houses were Burnt in Tuapukan

Seventy houses were burnt down at the Tuapukan refugee camp in West Timor due to an explosion caused by a gas canister that was not turned off when the owner left the house. It is estimated that USD 7000 worth of property was lost to Timorese refugees living in the camp. (STL)

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