Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 25 November 2005

[Poster's note: Long repeats of international articles already sent out to the east-timor list (info@etan.org) have been removed.]

UNOTIL

Daily Media Review

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Friday, 25 November 2005

National Media Reports

PM Alkatiri on Timorese Women and the UN presence

In his message for the launch of 16-day national campaign against violence against women on Thursday, Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri had been reportedly quoted as saying that the campaign was important since many Timorese women have been suffering from violence, adding that those violence have impact on their health, and it is a form of violation of human rights. Alkatiri stressed that even though Timor-Leste is now peaceful, violence within the community continues to take place, particularly violence against women. “My adviser from the Office of Promotion of Equality and Gender, Maria Domingas Fernandes Alves has informed me that 490 cases related to gender-based violence had been reported to police. The National Hospital dealt with 131 cases, and local NGOs have reported on 238 cases. This shows that the rate of violence against women is high. Many victims even did not report the cases to the police. Alkatiri further said that since the violence has also an impact on other human rights, and the fact that a woman continues to suffer from violence, she would not be able to fully participate in the lives of the nation economically, socially and politically.

PM Alkatiri was reported as saying that Timor-Leste still needs the international community and United Nations, but not necessarily such a mission as the current one (UNOTIL). He also added that despite the existence of the current UN mission, there are already UN agencies, such as UNDP, UNICEF and UNESCO that Timor-Leste needs to work more with. (STL, JN Diario)

Vemasse Bomb Case a Police Fabrication

The Vemasse bomb incident [sic] on 17 November is a fabrication by the Vemasse sub-district PNTL, as a means of covering up the actions of the police toward a citizen in early November. The concerned citizen, Nivio da Costa, sent a letter to the President of the National Parliament, the PNTL and F-FDTL Commanders, the Prosecutor-General, and the media, requesting that the relevant authorities take action to change the current police mentality, in particular concerning their violent behaviour. Da Costa is currently wanted by police on charges of being involved in the Vemasse bomb case, but he and his friends wish to give themselves up, on the provision that they will not be beaten by the police if they do so. The Vemasse bomb case has still not been resolved, with the Minister of Interior recently accusing certain political parties of being involved, inciting protest from some members of the opposition. (STL)

Aitahan Matak: Police use Baucau Bomb Case to Undermine UNDERTIM

Speaking to the media on Thursday in response to the statement of Minister of Interior Lobato saying that those who were involved in the bomb attack towards Baucau’s PNTL station were given the instruction by certain political parties, the General Coordinator of CPD-RDTL, Antonio Aitahan Matak reportedly stated that it was a tactic of PNTL to undermine the UNDERTIM party. Matak argued that it was not the members of UNDERTIM, CPD-RDTL and other parties who carried such attack, adding that now in the era of independence, the Timorese who were involved in the resistance in the past, have no bad intention at all to destroy the country. . (DT, JN Diario)

Guterres: Final Public Hearing on Veterans Bill Cancelled

President of National Parliament’s Commission A, Vicente Guterres told the media that the final public hearing supposed to be held on Thursday on the proposed bill on veterans was cancelled due to the absence of the three organs of the State: President of Republic, Xanana Gusmão, President of Parliament, Francisco Guterres Lu-Olo and Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri, adding that it was caused by the fact that President Gusmão and the Prime Minister Alkatiri had a weekly security meeting. Meanwhile, the Timorese Church representatives also presented their views on the law, requesting the Government to recognize the clergies who died for the sake of fighting for the freedom of Timor-Leste. In response to the request by the Church, Guterres said that the Government will recognize the clergies as long as there is a complete data on them. Guterres further informed the media that after the public hearings held at the Parliament, the Commission would go to the districts to consult with communities in order to obtain their views on the proposed bill. (STL)

Update on Oil and Gas Conference

It is reported that oil exploration in the Greater Sunrise oil field should create employment opportunities for Timor-Leste, if the pipeline comes to Timor-Leste, to the south coast of Betano. A source attending the two-day oil and gas conference held last week, told reporters that experts attending the conference reaffirmed that it is possible to construct a pipeline and LNG plant in Timor-Leste’s waters. The conference, attended by over 20 large oil and gas companies, showed the extensive interest that international investors have in the potential of the Timor Sea. The company executives showed great interest in the results of the seismic surveys recently conducted for the first time in Timor-Leste’s waters. Two representatives of civil society attended the conference, Tomas Freitas, Director of NGO Luta Hamutuk, and Justino da Silva from NGO Forum. It is reported that the presence of the civil society representatives shows the commitment of the government to develop Timor-Leste’s natural resources in a transparent and accountable manner. (TP)

Lecturer: Government in Dilemma over Timor Sea

The government is experiencing a dilemma in making a decision regarding the Greater Sunrise and Bayu Undan oil fields, according to Aristides Afonso, Economics Lecturer from Timor-Leste National University. Speaking to TP on Thursday, Aristides said that the government is weighing up the positive and negative impacts of any decision it makes, which must be based on a comprehensive analysis. Related to the demands of the opposition that the government ceases all exploration, he explained that as Timor-Leste is a poor country and needs money, even though it should be allocated a large amount of wealth from the oil and gas, it must take what it can. If the government ceases exploration as a means of preventing theft of the oil and gas, it will also mean that the government will not be able to implement the investment projects that it has planned, such as for infrastructure development. (TP)

Political Observer: Debate on 1975 independence proclamation should cease

The debate on the 1975 proclaimer of independence should cease, according to political and military observer, Julio Tomas Pinto. He said that such a debate has been occurring because different groups have their individual interests in interpreting history, and he recommended that the National Parliament take the initiative to establish an independent commission to research the history that has been much spoken of in CAVR and in the media. He said that now is a good opportunity to do such, as many people who experienced this history are still alive. (TP)

TVTL News Monitoring

Council of State and Superior Council for Defence and Security Meetings

Yesterday at the Office of the President, members of the Council of State held a meeting. Issues discussed during the meeting were not revealed to the press. TVTL sources indicated, however, that among the issues discussed were the status of the Timor Sea negotiations and the final data regarding the former combatants and veterans. A meeting for the Superior Council for Defence and Security took place in the afternoon.

National Parliament Cancelled Public Hearing on Veterans Issue

Parliamentary Committee A President Vicente Guterres, reportedly said that Committee A will vote on the draft law generally and socialise it to the public in all districts of the country. He added that the President and the Prime Minister are ready to visit the districts to socialize the draft law on veterans.

Government and UNDESA launch “BA AN RASIK” pilot project After

launching the “BA AN RASIK” (“In Our Own Interest”) project, Vice-Minister of Natural Resources, Mineral and Energy Policy Jose Teixeira reportedly told journalists that the communities from Dili, Manatuto and Aileu districts will have benefit from the implementation of the said pilot project, as the latter will contribute to poverty reduction and to empower the communities in rural areas. Mr. Teixeira reportedly added that in order to ensure sustainable development, there needs to be participation from the people and NGOs.

Ministry of Health Organizes Training for Nurses and Midwives

Yesterday, the Ministry of Health conducted training for nurses and midwives at the health clinic in Dili with a view to safeguarding people from HIV/AIDS. Training Coordinator Lourenço Caminhas reportedly stated that the objective of the meeting is to provide information to the nurses and midwives so that they know how to deal with HIV/AIDS cases and to counsel people on it. Mr Caminhas reportedly added that the training was conducted with the support of UNICEF.

The Adviser for the Promotion of Gender Equality at the Office of the Prime Minister Receives Support from UNFPA and UNIFEM to hold a 16-day Campaign on Violence Against Women. NGO Forum obtained credentials from the Adviser for the Promotion of Gender Equality at the Office of the Prime Minister to hold the campaign. Angelina Maria, the coordinator of NGO Forum reportedly stated the campaign will begin in Lautem district and end in Ermera district on 09 December 2005.

Unidentified Persons Threaten People in Manufahi

TVTL reported that the former Suco Chief of Bubususu, Fatuberliu sub-district, Manufahi district, Antonio da Costa, has reported some unidentified individuals have been threatening persons during the night in that village since the end of October. PNTL has acknowledged these occurrences and has sent PNTL agents to the said village to provide security for the people.

National News Sources

Timor Post (TP)
Radio Timor-Leste (RTL)
Suara Timor Lorosae (STL)
Diario Tempo (DT)
Diario Nacional
Seminario
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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