Selected postings from east-timor (reg.easttimor)

Subject: AN: Locals, Ex East Timorese Refugees Abandon Resettlement Areas


February 19, 2004 8:09pm Antara

Atambua, E Nusatenggara, Feb 19 (ANTARA) - At least 319 resettlement units in Belu distrit set up in Indonesia's East Nusatenggara province between 2000 and 2002 for local people and former East Timor refugees have been abandoned, an Indonesian official said here Thursday.

More than 300 houses have been neglected by local people and former East Timorese refugees without any clear reason, Belu district deputy head Gregorius Mau Bili said in a meeting with local leaders.

"We will take certain measure to save the abandoned resettelement units," he said.

Many local residents who have a home in Belu have applied as a resipient of the resettlement unit but they do not want to move to the resettlement area, he said.

He alsosaid many former East Timorese refugees who have received keys of the new resettlement have chosen to stay in emergency camps.

The refugees only come to the resettlement areas if the Indonesian government distributes humanitarian assistance, he said.

Gregorius expressed regret with the local residents and the former East Timorese refugees unreadiness to hand over the keys to other people who want to stay in the resettlement area.

Data from the Belu district office showed the provincial administration set up 200 resettlement houses in Lakekun village, 250 in Bakustulama village, 250 in Leosama village, 450 in Umakalaran village, and 100 each in Aitoun and Asumanu villages between 2000 and 2002.


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