Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 17 November 2005


Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review

Thursday 17 November 2005

National Media Reports

UN to provide electoral experts to prepare 2007 elections

SRSG Hasegawa on Wednesday informed the Prime Minister that the UN is to provide two experts to provide assistance in preparations for the upcoming general elections in 2007, as well as support for the National Parliament. Hasegawa explained that the experts to advise [sic- assess] on electoral procedures arrived yesterday, while others will arrive in the near future, and confirmed that the two experts will be in Timor-Leste for approximately two weeks. He said that they would be speaking with the Prime Minister and the Minister of State Administration to discuss what needs to be done. (TP, STL)

International Congress on oil and gas begins in Dili

A two-day International Congress on land and sea oil and gas exploration begins today in Dili. International investors including approximately 70 foreign companies will participate in the Congress organized by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy Policy. (TP)

ASDT, PD and PSD Demand the Halt of Timor Sea Negotiations

It was reported that ASDT, PD and PSD, through a press conference held on Wednesday, demanded the Government to halt the negotiation process of Greater Sunrise and the oil exploration in Bayu Undan since the Timorese people have not been aware of the law on petroleum funds, which have not been properly implemented until now, and also where the funds collected from the Bayu Undan are deposited. The three parties further argued that the exploration of Timor-Leste's oil constitutes the hope of the people and the investors, adding that if the exploration is carried out without certain considerations, it will have a big impact on the national economy; people will continue to be poor, illiteracy and the corruption in the Government will increase, and the investors will not have the huge desire [to invest in Timor-Leste].

Meanwhile, President of ASDT, Francisco Xavier do Amaral stated that ASDT, PD and ASDT have the intention to establish a coalition, adding that the coalition is aimed at preparing the people of Timor-Leste to face the challenges of the development process in the near future. Moreover, Xavier do Amaral said that if his party wins the 2007 general elections, it will first focus on the interests of the people, and value those who suffer since the development process in the near future needs a bottom-up mechanism and not a top-down one. (TP).

Timor Sea Negotiations and Government Legitimacy: PM Alkatiri

Responding to the demands of the three opposition parties: PD, ASDT and PSD to halt the Timor Sea negotiation process, Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri had been quoted as saying that the Government, carries out its work, including holding negotiations on the oil exploration in Timor Sea, in accordance with the legitimacy it has. Alkatiri further explained that the legitimacy that his Government has is historic and democratic; Fretilin has fought for the freedom of the country for the last 24 years and it won the elections in 2001. Alkatiri appealed to the opposition parties that have no legitimacy [from the people] to better focus on how to educate and guide the people instead of spending too much time in criticizing [the Government], adding that their demands have no legal basis, and therefore it is better for the Government to ignore them. [TP]

NP must make efforts to recognize former combatants

The National Parliament must make efforts to recognize former combatants, according to Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak. Speaking to reporters at the National Parliament after participating in Commission A's brainstorming session on the law for former combatants, Ruak reportedly expressed his appreciation to the President of the National Parliament for inviting him to contribute his ideas on the matter, and said that concrete measures must be taken to ensure that those who struggled for the country are awarded the appropriate dignity and respect that they deserve. Regarding the possibility that some former combatants will be awarded with government subsidies, Ruak said that this is something that will be dealt with in the proposed law. (STL)

Police must identify group: Colonel Anan Timor

Chief of Staff of the F-FDTL Colonel Lere Anan Timor has asked the PNTL to identify the armed group [sic] that is reported [see Parliamentarian comments in Daily Media Review 16 Nov 05] to be occupying one of Falintil's former 1999 internment camps in Odelgomo, Bobonaro District. Anan Timor told reporters that this issue is something that must be dealt with by PNTL as it is an internal security issue. He reportedly said that as F-FDTL are now concentrated only in Metinaro, Lospalos, Baucau and Dili, it is clear that it is not Falintil but rather militia or an illegal group currently occupying the camp. (STL)

Regional Media Reports

Zeng Qinghong Meets with President of East Timor Xanana

On November 15, Chinese Vice President Zeng Qinghong met in the Great Hall of the People with President of East Timor Xanana Gusmao, who was here in Beijing to attend 2005 Global Business Leaders' Forum and both sides exchanged views on bilateral relations and international and regional issues of common interest. Zeng conveyed cordial greetings from President Hu Jintao, who was on foreign visits, to Xanana and expressed congratulations for the achievements East Timor has made in realizing national reconciliation, safeguarding social stability and promoting economic growth since its founding 3 years ago.

Zeng made positive comments on bilateral relations. He said that both sides share a profound traditional friendship and since the establishment of diplomatic ties, bilateral relations have entered a new development period. Both sides have witnessed close high-level exchanges and shown mutual trust and support for each other in the political area. They have also continuously expanded exchanges and cooperation in the areas of economy, trade and health and maintained sound communication and coordination in international and regional affairs. Zeng indicated that the Chinese government attaches great importance to relations with East Timor and would like to continue strongly advancing friendly exchanges and mutually beneficial cooperation in various areas in the policy of "treating neighbors well and as partners".

Zeng highly appreciated East Timor for resolutely pursuing the one-China policy. Xanana agreed with Zeng's comments on bilateral relations. He indicated that the government and people of East Timor hold friendly feelings towards China and the government of East Timor attaches great importance to developing friendly relations with China. East Timor would like to strengthen cooperation with China in the areas of economy, trade and resources exploitation and steadily push for development of bilateral relations. (MFA People's Republic of China Press Release)

National News Sources

Timor Post (TP)
Radio Timor-Leste (RTL)
Suara Timor Lorosae (STL)
Diario Tempo (DT)
Diario Nacional
Lia Foun (LF)
Televisaun Timor-Leste [TVTL]

These Items Do Not Reflect the Position or Views of the United Nations. UNOTIL Public Information Office


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